Chef Micah Frank’s guide to eating out in Indianapolis

By: Amy Lynch

May 8, 2015

Chef Micah Frank's guide to eating out in Indianapolis

Not many people are more in tune with the Indianapolis food scene than Chef Micah Frank. After working at restaurants within the city and in Washington D.C. (and also traveling through Europe), Micah Frank has happily settled into his role as chef and operating partner at Black Market, a casual, classy eatery at the north end of the vibrant Mass Ave Cultural District.


Since Black Market opened in 2011, Frank’s culinary efforts have earned him three nominations for Food & Wine Magazine People’s Best New Chef (Great Lakes Region); and in 2015, he was nominated for a James Beard Foundation award in the Best Chef Great Lakes category.

Chef Micah Frank's guide to eating out in Indianapolis
The beef tongue cocktail with roasted beets is a popular order at Black Market © Black Market/Matt Kryger

Heavily influenced by British chef Fergus Henderson’s nose-to-tail approach to cuisine, Micah Frank excels at creating dishes that highlight clean flavours in exceptional ways. To wit, Black Market’s daily pickles with crunchy peanut dipping sauce, a beef tongue “cocktail” with cottage cheese and roasted beets, and the comfortingly rich Welsh rarebit are consistently popular orders.


“I treat each day differently with simplicity and approachability at the forefront,” Frank explains. “Black Market is a come-as-you-are gastropub offering a unique dining experience. We will always embrace Indiana’s four distinct seasons while establishing chef-farm relations that ultimately shape our changing menu.”

Chef Micah Frank's guide to eating out in Indianapolis
Black Market delivers elevated but approachable cuisine, craft beer and cocktails in a chic gastropub-style atmosphere © Lavengood Photography

Here, Chef Micah Frank shares some insights about Indy’s dining landscape:


How would you describe Indianapolis dining?


“It’s an evolving scene that’s starting to develop its own identity for Indiana.”


What do you think we’re doing well?


“Greater access to fresh produce and local products through more farmers’ and specialty markets, and Indiana artisan cheeses.”

Chef Micah Frank's guide to eating out in Indianapolis
Roasted marrow bones make a hearty meal at Black Market © Black Market/Matt Kryger

What are some of your favourite local dining establishments? 


Bluebeard, Late Harvest Kitchen, Plow & Anchor, Public Greens, R Bistro, Recess, Rook, and Tinker Street. All offer seasonal, creative and locally sourced menus that change often to keep the experience fresh and uniquely Indiana.”


Any favourite breakfast spots?


Milktooth for brunch “” Dutch Baby pancakes, green tea fried chicken and whatever special Chef Jonathan Brooks is cooking that morning. Foundry Provisions for my daily latte.”

Chef Micah Frank's guide to eating out in Indianapolis
Fountain Square dining hotspot, Bluebeard, is known for its creative, locally sourced menus © Visit Indy

How about lunch?


“Leblebi and the vegetarian offerings at Duos, Siam Square‘s drunken noodles, and Working Man’s Friend for the best double cheeseburger in town.”


You’re keen on touting local suppliers on your Black Market menus. What are some of your current favourite local food products?


Tulip Tree Creamery cheeses; South Circle Farm carrots and beets; Dunbar Farm, Harvestland Farm and Growing Places Indy for year-round greens; Bell Aquaculture for perch, bluegill and red trout; Eli Creek whey-fed pork; and New Day mead and cider.”

Chef Micah Frank's guide to eating out in Indianapolis
A relatively new entry on the Indianapolis dining scene, Public Greens offers up modern interpretations of healthy comfort food © Patachou Inc./Visit Indy

Where do you like to do your food shopping?


“Our many local farmers’ markets, Goose the Market, Pogue’s Run Grocer, R2GO, Saraga International Market and Wildwood Market.”


Black Market stocks an impressive craft beer selection. Any personal favourites?


“There are so many options available these days, but local beers from Daredevil and Bier breweries are my go-tos.”

Chef Micah Frank's guide to eating out in Indianapolis
Indianapolis-based Bier Brewery is a two-time Indiana State Fair Champion Brewery award recipient © Lavengood Photography

And finally, what’s next for Indy’s food scene?


“Asian-style street food and noodles, specialty bakeries, plant-based menus, juice bars and Indiana-farmhouse comfort food in tavern settings.”


Header image: Chef Micah Frank © Black Market


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Have you been to Chef Micah Frank’s Black Market restaurant? Have you visited any of his favourite food spots in the city? Let us know in the comments section below.


Written by Amy Lynch


Amy Lynch

Amy Lynch is a freelance writer and editor in Indianapolis, Ind., and has traveled extensively throughout the United States and western Europe. A member of the Midwest Travel Writers Association, Amy’s work has appeared in Delta Sky, the Chicago Tribune, Midwest Living, Indianapolis Monthly, Cincinnati Magazine and Draft.

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