I recently wet down to Indianapolis for the North Central Region Roller Derby Championships (where D.Rough was skating). It’s always a good time, where I get to yell really loud for a few hours each day, sometimes without a shirt on, sometimes covered in chest paint. I don’t apologize. While D.Rough is in tournament mode, I get to find my own interesting and horrifying food, since her body doesn’t like surprises on bout day.
Fortunately, D.Rough helped out with my pre-trip food research and found out that Indianapolis is known for its breaded pork tenderloins. So I made some calls and emails to people I know that lived/lived in Indianapolis. Not a single one knew about this city-wide claim to fame. In fact, while I was in Indianapolis at the tournament, I asked local fans about this claim to fame and none of them had ever heard of it. I told them to look it up since it’s all over the Internet – Indianapolis, famous for breaded pork tenderloins. [Note: every restaurant I went to in the area (aside from a drunken late night trip to Steak N Shake) highly recommended their pork tenderloin as one of the best things on their respective menus – I’m NOT kidding.]
I was determined to get a breaded pork-T, since I grew up on the things and hadn’t had one in a while. I’ve got a few local favorites back in Illinois, but I honestly don’t think I’ve had a pork-T since I moved to Minnesota. Weird.
I had some time to kill while waiting for roller derby to get started, so I hit the streets. About two blocks from the venue, I stumbled across a little pub called Loughmiller’s Pub & Eatery. There was some sidewalk seating, so I thought I’d go check out the menu. At the very least, I’d get a drink. I didn’t want to be rude.
I walked inside and was greeted by the bar tender. Nice guy and very helpful. I ordered a jack and coke and asked for a menu. Then I asked him what was good here at Loughmiller’s. The very first words out of his mouth were, “We sell a lot of breaded pork tenderloins here. Second only to burgers.” Ding! Ding!! Ding!!! How do people in Indianapolis not know they’re known for this?! I told him that I had heard the area was known for good pork tenderloins and I would be happy to try one out. Then we made fun of this really odd looking pink stuff behind the bar. He mocked it heavily and said it was like some sort of strawberry baileys type drink. I didn’t have the heart to buy the bottle from him right there, but I will track it down eventually. That sounded delicious.
I went outside to grab a seat and the waitress chatted me up after I got settled and checked my email on my phone. The meal came out pretty quickly and I was happy they hadn’t done anything weird to an old favorite of mine. This looked really good. I started with the fries. They were really crispy, without being burnt and were pretty darn good. I was letting the sandwich cool down, so I finished almost all of the fries before I even got started on the sandwich.
The sandwich was delicious and generously sized. Thicker than many I’ve seen, which means it retained a lot of juice. Scalding hot delicious juice (or grease – call it whatever you want, treehugger). The breading was good and thick and there was no gristle at all inside, however, the whole thing could have been cooked a slight bit longer. The breading could have had a touch more crispiness to it. I’m a fan of this breaded pork tenderloin – not that I had any doubt. I might be a little biased, however.
A few people walked past my table on the sidewalk and asked if this was a good place for lunch. I told them I wasn’t from these parts, but the sandwich I was eating was top-notch. They immediately went inside. I’m happy to give a resounding review when warranted. The sandwich may not make any national rankings, it was absolutely what I needed and a delicious way to start my time in Indianapolis. Thanks, Loughmiller’s!
Top 5 things about Loughmiller’s Pub & Eatery
1. Breaded Pork Tenderloin
2. Crispy fries
3. Really awesome staff
4. They have some sort of strawberry alcohol behind the bar
5. Really nice atmosphere – it says “neighborhood bar” on the outside and that’s what it feels like
Bottom 5 things
1. They don’t have Heinz ketchup – only Red Gold. I’m very loyal to Heinz because it’s the best
2. Indianapolis has a lot of riff raff downtown. They’re very...uh…talkative while you’re eating
3. I didn’t actually order any of the delicious-sounding strawberry stuff behind the bar for fear of mocking
4. I keep forgetting you can still smoke in bars in Indiana
5. The breading on the tenderloin could have been fried a little more (of course I say that about SOOO many things…)