Keepin' It Real.... Local.


Keepin' It Real.... Local.

Attribution: Amber Powers of Powers Digital Marketing


I’m sure you’ve noticed that buying local is a trend. Everyone’s talking about it. In Indianapolis, we’ve seen hashtag campaigns from #LocalIndy or #IndyLocal to #KeepIndyIndie.

Local isn’t a trend just for the sake of being trendy.  People are finally getting it. When you buy local, it stimulates the local economy. Why? Did you know that when you spend money with local businesses, as compared with national chains or big-box stores, between 2-3 times more money is returned spent with other local businesses? Well it is. When money is spent with other local businesses, it has the potential of creating more wealth where you live.

Why does that matter? In communities where there are thriving local businesses, home values gain an average of 50%! As well, it’s documented that local business owners are among the first in your community to reach out to help others in need – charities and other worth-while causes… which grows your community as well. If that’s not enough – these local business owners are your neighbors… your friends… your son and/or daughter’s school-mates’ parents. 

I can see you’re still not convinced. How about the environment? Does that tug on your heartstrings? Think about the amount of travel big box stores and large chain restaurants put on their big trucks to bring more and more to you. When you buy local, you’re supporting less travel for similar products. As well, the emissions put into our air from all of the extra packaging (heaped on the extra litter) from larger stores… It kind of makes it a no-brainer.

You might be saying – that’s great, but I don’t want to buy local just for the sake of buying local if I’m going to get an inferior product or experience. OK – we have an answer for that too! There are great tools out there to help you determine if this is a joint you’d like to frequent as much as your neighborhood AppleDees… See what I did there?

Facebook Reviews: Hop on Facebook, look up the local store and see what others have to say about their experience there.

Yelp: Grab the Yelp app from your phone’s store. If you’re in an unfamiliar area, all you have to do is turn on your GPS settings, tap the word “restaurant” and it will take you to the closest restaurants to you – local and national. There are reviews from their standard as well as “elite” members.

If all else fails – seek out information from others in the area. They’re your best resource to find hidden gems.

So- Indianapolis… we want to help you on your mission to buy local. We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite restaurants all over our fine city as well as retailers.  Respond below if there are more you’d like to see and we’ll get our list updated!

South Side:

Oaken Barrel Brewing Company (and might I suggest the loaded Idaho Nachos)

Vino Villa (baked brie is ZOMG)

Yats – needs we say more?

House of Tokyo – creamy ginger dressing that keeps me coming back for more

Ichiban Japanese and Sushi

Yokohama Japanese Cuisine and Sushi

Strange Brew (Coffee House)


JenDaisy Boutique – clothing thrift store/boutique

Take Root – Home Décor

Eckstein Shoe Store and Repair – the name says it all

Rustic Root – Antique and Vintage

Blue Mile – Running Shoes

East Side:

La Mexi-Gringa  - 100% Authentic Mexican fare

Chef Dan’s Indy - Cajun &  Creole

Sisters Comfort Food - The name says it all

Papa Roux – Cajun & Creole (Po-Boys galore)

Cornival Popcornshop – ALL of the flavors of popcorn and SO good

Tie Dye Grill – Their tenderloins though…

Garcia’s Hotdogs – This is no ordinary hotdog. You’ve been warned.

Jockamo Upper Crust Pizza

His Place Eatery – Chicken & Waffles and other extraordinary soul food

DuFour’s in Irvington – Amazing French toast. Like Whoa.

Black Acre Brewing Co.

Hilltop Tavern


ReTulled – Consignment formalwear and bridal

Day-Ja-Voo – Antiques, Collectibles, Consignment

Audrey’s Place – Furniture

Black Sheep Gifts

West Side:

Mug ‘N Bun Drive in

3 in 1 Restaurant – Mexican Fare

Chapati – Indian, Pakistani, Middle Eastern

Bee Coffee Roasters

Spice Nation – Indian, Vegetarian, Vegan

Havana Café – Cuban

Magoo’s California Pizza

Saigon Restaurant – Vietnamese

Abyssinia Ethiopian Restaurant

Griffins Café


Sai’s Boutique & Gifts

Newfangled Confections - Frittle Candy, Candied Spicy Pecans, Pralines and more gluten free


The Parthenon Restaurant Indy – Greek, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean

The SoHo Café and Gallery – Full of different art and amazing coffee/pastries

Union Baking Company – Might I recommend the Lancaster? You won’t regret it.

Local Eatery and Pub

Blaze Pizza

Bub’s Burgers and Ice Cream

Mudbugs Cajun Café

Jamaican Reggae Grill

A2Z Café

Lulu’s Coffee and Bakehouse


Blue Mile – Running Shoes

Consigned By Design

Downtown and Broad Ripple:

Good Morning Mama’s

Mama Carolla’s Old Italian Restaurant

Taste Café and Marketplace

Biscuits – The breakfast selection is incredible.

Broad Ripple Brew Pub

Taste of Havana – Cuban Sandwiches/Soup

Chef JJ’s Backyard BBQ

Ezra’s Enlightened Café – lots of veggie/vegan and gluten free options

3 Sisters Café – more veggie/vegan options and oh so yum.

The Rathskeller – German goodness… and the Bier selection is to die for.

Black Market – quirky gourmet food. Never been disappointed either.

Pizzology – The mushroom risotto topped with egg… SWOON

Cafe Patachou

SunKing Brewing Co.


Boomerang BTQ – so many adorable clothing options

Silver in the City – gifts (there’s something for everyone in there)

Watt’s Blooming – Floral. You have to check out her arrangements!

Homespun: Modern Handmade - Gifts

Indy Reads Books

Two online retailers that are also local:


The Local Radish -

Wrist Rosaries – (Handmade Rosary Bracelets)


Also, a big shout out to Indiana Originals – they’re trying to bring Indy to the local shops. If you’re a local business, I highly recommend signing up with them!






For The Love of Accidental Entrepreneurs


For The Love of Accidental Entrepreneurs

Author: Amber Powers - Powers Digital Marketing

You might be asking yourself, “Self… Why would you want to spend a couple of hours eating delicious (and authentic) Mexican food, learning how to Salsa, drinking Black Acre brews – and as the cherry on top of that hot fudge sundae – you’re supporting an incredible cause?” No… no. Nevermind. You wouldn’t ask yourself that because that would be RIDICULOUS!

You may (or may not) have heard that we are putting on a block party to be remembered. It’s to celebrate the Grand Opening of La Mexi-Gringa and we couldn’t be more excited. Not only because we have an incredible day lined up for you, but we also are doing this, in part, to donate a portion of the proceeds to The PourHouse. The PourWHO??

We’re glad you asked. The PourHouse was founded by Andrea De Mink. Some may say it was established by accident, but we don’t believe this was any accident. The story goes a little like this:


Andrea used to be employed as a temporary employee by a company based on Monument Circle. One day, as she was heading to lunch, she saw a man digging through a dumpster for food. She began processing what was going on and had a realization that this man’s only choice, if he wanted to survive, was to eat what someone else had thrown away. At that moment, she decided to approach the man, ask him if she could buy him a hot dog… and from that moment on… a friendship was forged.

As painful as it was, Andrea began to realize that as much as she didn’t want to own stereotypes regarding anyone – she did grapple with stereotypes regarding homeless people. She began to let those stereotypes go and as she did, her friendship with this homeless man grew. As her relationship with him grew – she truly began to view him as a human. And individual. A friend.

With that genuine relationship came a desire to help him. She emphasizes that she didn’t want to take him on as a project… “I didn’t want to fix him. He was my friend… and I do what friends do for one another. I helped.”

Andrea found herself sitting on Monument Circle with a box full of popsicles to hand out. Time passed and more and more homeless were drawn to sit and share their lives with her. More friendships were fashioned and she continued doing what friends do… helping.

Andrea began an IT consulting role, which allowed more schedule flexibility. With that flexibility, she spent more time listening and helping the Indianapolis homeless community. In time, she realized, “Hey… I’m actually doing something with this.” With that, in 2005, The PourHouse officially became a Non-Profit to benefit the homeless community of Indianapolis.

In the past 24 months, The PourHouse has facilitated (with the help of Continuum of Care) housing for 62 homeless people. They hold street outreach to reach chronically homeless or those that have mental health barriers. The PourHouse also provides necessities to make it while living on the streets. “Just in the past week, we’ve passed out over 300 pairs of socks.” De Mink said.


Sounds like Rita Franco, owner of La Mexi-Gringa, and Andrea De Mink have something in common. They’re both accidental entrepreneurs.  Kindred spirits have a way of supporting one another – and that’s why Rita chose to make this block party something more meaningful. Showcasing local entrepreneurs is a passion for her. Accidental or intentional.

If you aren’t able to make it to the Block Party, but you would still like to help, don’t fret. If you’d like to know if you can provide the necessities, such as socks – or if you would like to donate money… You’re in luck. Just click here and The PourHouse has made it easy. They let you know what they need and you provide it.

We look forward to seeing you on September 19th! Bring a healthy appetite! We have a surprise for you….

TAMALES ARE BACK at the Block Party and every Friday and Saturday after that!!!

We’ll see you Saturday, September 19th from 2pm – 8pm!