El Camino Blog

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

Indianapolis Coffee Houses: Red Eye Cafe

1:15 pm, Monday, October 16, 2006, The Red Eye Cafe, 250 S. Meridian St. Indianapolis, IN 46225- First off, the waitress was very friendly; noticing that I was perplexed about where to sit, she chimed in with "so many choices" and a pleasant giggle. I mentioned being by once at 2am; she regaled me with a couple of tales about kicking out drunks at late hours. She finished with, "I guess I don't really miss the night shift." I happily discovered that WiFi is free. The interior of the place has plenty of nookes and crannies to ensure your coziness. I found myself curious about a small section off to the right of the entrance designated "Coffee Shop".
Strictly speaking, the Red Eye Cafe is not a coffeehouse, but, in keeping with my informal criteria for 'metaphyscially-qualified-to-be-a-coffeehouse' establishments, it is 1) open into the evening (it's open 24/7, in fact), 2) fairly unique in ambience compared with most Indy restaurants (in fact, the place largely exists to cater to Bar Row drunks), and it is 3) right in the heart of the Warehouse District, near lots of cool bars and restaurants, and conveniently located for meeting friends if you wish.
I had the half-pound Red Eye Burger (w/fries) for $6.99. It arrived in under 5 mintues. The platter included perfectly golden-crisp waffle fries. The burger itself was so-so, with a suitable flame-broiled type taste, but a slight hint of sogginess on the edges.
A few board games are scattered about the joint, which I had not noticed when I was here before (at 2AM, in an inebriated state). Late in the meal, I finally got the courage to ask about the 'Coffee Shop' area in the corner. The waitress replied, "I'm not really sure. They were going to get a coffee-house deal going here, but then they started running out of syrups, then they took all the signs down." She then seemed a bit regretful about saying all that, and tentatively offered to get me some coffee from the "Coffee Shop" if I wanted. I ordered a chocolate cappuccino. It was pretty much an average-tasting cappucino. The cup said "Seattle's Best" on it, but I'm not sure if it was actually the Seattle's Best brand or not. I'm too unenthused to write anymore on this place. Consider Red Eye a worthy place to visit if you get drunk downtown, but otherwise, forget it. Something about being here sober is vaguely depressing. 2 Stars.

UPDATE: I've done some some minor reconsidering (see the November 14 post)


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