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Sidebars: 'The Local' features the best of Indiana home-grown foods

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SidebarsTime to bend the rules again. This place isn’t exactly near a courthouse, but it is kinda, sorta, on the way to many. It is located about five minutes from my Westfield home and a favorite of my darling wife, Amy, and me. While wonderfully convenient for me and my family, that is not the reason I chose to write about this place. I write about this place because the concept is great and so is the food.

The Local focuses on exactly what its name touts. A blurb from its website defines the concept best: We feature hand-crafted, freshly made artisan foods, locally crafted ales and cocktails, using all-natural and organic ingredients when available. That last bit might scare people like Jenny away, but it shouldn’t. This isn’t some earthy, granola-head place run by dim-witted 20-somethings who take full advantage of nature’s offerings, including select weed varieties. No, one look at the menu and one visit will tell you otherwise.

The appeal of this place is that it offers something to please every palate, from the most die-hard, red-blooded American meat-and-potato lovers to the crowd that might bear a bumper sticker on their VW bus at a Phish concert reading something like: “Save the Gay Whales for Jesus.” Oh yes, it is a very family-friendly place too.

A favorite starter of mine is the dry-rubbed wings. If you’re flying solo, the portion is easily large enough to serve as your entrée. The spicy wings burst alive with flavor because of the homemade rub and not because of some bottled hot sauce manufactured a thousand miles away. Other starters include french fries (go Cajun here), frog legs (yes, frog legs) and baked goat cheese, to name a few.

The salads range from the basic tossed green (don’t even think iceberg lettuce) to the Caesar salad but also include a grilled squash salad with bacon lardons and toasted pumpkin seeds all tossed in a maple vinaigrette dressing. Or, how does a steak salad sound, complete with mixed greens, romaine, grilled filet mignon, bleu cheese, grapes, house buttermilk dressing and, YES, boldly topped with french fries? There are other salad varieties, and you can add grilled chicken, seared salmon, a fried egg or filet mignon to any salad, but they had me at the salad with french fries on top.

Entrees include lamb osso buco, squid ink ravioli with squash and ricotta cheese filling and sautéed with calamari in sage brown butter, and the basic but tasty seared salmon and scallops. My kids love the bacon mac and cheese, but I see a lot of adults eating it too.

Come for a burger and you have a chance to try something you’ve never tried before. You can have a lamb burger, or how about an elk burger with blue cheese and roasted garlic? They serve bison burgers crusted in black pepper and doused with horseradish cream sauce. Yes, they serve beef burgers too and veggie burgers and turkey burgers, all nicely portioned.

The craft beer selection is respectable, including Sun King, Mad Anthony and Upland brands. Breckenridge is available too, a pleasant surprise but not exactly “local.” Of course, if you’d rather have a tall-boy PBR, you can have that too.

The Local strives to support Indiana suppliers by offering the best they have to offer. Some of these include Heartland Indiana Beef Coop, Viking Lamb, Fair Oaks Farms, Miller Amish Country Poultry, Capriole Goat Cheese and Gelato Da Vinci to name a few. Complete the loop by offering your support. I have, repeatedly. The Local Eatery and Pub, 14655 North Gray Road, Westfield, IN. www.localeateryandpub.com.

__________

Fred Vaiana and Jennifer Lukemeyer practice at Voyles Zahn & Paul in Indianapolis, focusing in criminal defense. Both enjoy a good meal with colleagues and friends, and their Sidebars column reviews and rates eateries lawyers may enjoy visiting when working at courthouses throughout Indiana. The opinions expressed in this column are those of the authors.
 

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  1. Call it unauthorized law if you must, a regulatory wrong, but it was fraud and theft well beyond that, a seeming crime! "In three specific cases, the hearing officer found that Westerfield did little to no work for her clients but only issued a partial refund or no refund at all." That is theft by deception, folks. "In its decision to suspend Westerfield, the Supreme Court noted that she already had a long disciplinary history dating back to 1996 and had previously been suspended in 2004 and indefinitely suspended in 2005. She was reinstated in 2009 after finally giving the commission a response to the grievance for which she was suspended in 2004." WOW -- was the Indiana Supreme Court complicit in her fraud? Talk about being on notice of a real bad actor .... "Further, the justices noted that during her testimony, Westerfield was “disingenuous and evasive” about her relationship with Tope and attempted to distance herself from him. They also wrote that other aggravating factors existed in Westerfield’s case, such as her lack of remorse." WOW, and yet she only got 18 months on the bench, and if she shows up and cries for them in a year and a half, and pays money to JLAP for group therapy ... back in to ride roughshod over hapless clients (or are they "marks") once again! Aint Hoosier lawyering a great money making adventure!!! Just live for the bucks, even if filthy lucre, and come out a-ok. ME on the other hand??? Lifetime banishment for blowing the whistle on unconstitutional governance. Yes, had I ripped off clients or had ANY disciplinary history for doing that I would have fared better, most likely, as that it would have revealed me motivated by Mammon and not Faith. Check it out if you doubt my reading of this, compare and contrast the above 18 months with my lifetime banishment from court, see appendix for Bar Examiners report which the ISC adopted without substantive review: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS

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