This post was written by a Butler University student about their experience at one of 40+ restaurants involved in Devour Downtown – a prix-fixe way to experience some of Indianapolis’ best downtown restaurants twice a year. Check out all the posts written about Devour Downtown on the Indiana Insider Blog
If you are looking for a little adventure, a comfortable dining experience, and a satisfying meal, you can find it at the very end of Massachusetts Avenue. From the moment you step foot into R Bistro, it’s as if you’re tucked away in a corner that’s in the heart of a busy city. The dimly lit, L-shaped dining area is a very intimate setting catered toward smaller parties of two or four. A couple of pieces of abstract art and sculptures ornament the brick walls, hard wood floors, and metal top-tables.
For this Devour Downtown
experience, there is a set three-course menu for $30 per person. The first course was a pear and cheddar tossed salad in a sweet cream vinaigrette. This starter had just the right balance of crispness and sweetness, and it was topped with candied walnuts and pears of the perfect texture. The main course was beef bourguignon with grilled bread. Basically, it was more of a glorified beef stew – I really enjoyed this fancy spin on this comfort food. It was the perfectly sized portion and a great mix of tender beef, onions, carrots, bacon, and herbs. Dessert was an apple crisp with a pear-walnut ice cream topped with amaretto cookie and oatmeal crumble topping.
Our server was very attentive, and discreet, but not overly friendly. He did an excellent job serving us, but I would have appreciated little more interaction, welcome or introduction to the restaurant. I noticed he had introduced himself and asked the couple sitting next to us if they had dined there before, but we were not greeted with the same conversation. It was a nice surprise that Chef and Owner Regina Mehallick came out from the kitchen and introduced herself to us, and she interacted with some of the other customers throughout our dining experience. Our food was delivered in a very timely manner; I never felt rushed to finish the salad or the main course.
Although my friend and I did enjoy our experience and the delicious food at R Bistro, it wouldn’t be a place I would long to return to immediately or highly recommend to a peer. R Bistro provides more of a dining getaway for the more experienced business professionals rather than for today’s young professionals. Another feature to consider is that the Devour Downtown menu did not have any options, only a set, three course menu – this would be something to consider if you are vegan, vegetarian, or just wanted to try a variety of dishes. R-Bistro’s menu also changes weekly, so this is something for customers to keep in mind that there is not a set menu. Something else to consider when dining at R Bistro is that there are limited dining hours for dinner from Wednesday to Saturday from 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Overall, this experience was a nice getaway to a swanky, calm pocket of the city. The food was enjoyable, but I believe it would be more appreciated by older professionals.