Thursday, January 08, 2009

Great meal, bring a towel

This afternoon I had a deee-lightful and deee-licious time at The Loft at Traders Point Creamery, a dining establishment located inside an active dairy farm on the scenic northwest side of Indianapolis.

Or perhaps Zionsville. But I think Indianapolis. (Nope, Zionsville.)

Anyway.

A friend of mine works up on the northwest side, so I gathered him from his office, and we headed over to The Loft. He'd been to the Creamery before but had not been there for lunch, and I'd never been there for any purpose, so we were both looking forward to the experience.

The Loft Restaurant and Dairy Bar is a cool structure itself, home to soaring barnlike ceilings and a modern-style dairy bar. The contrast of the wooden beams and the contempo-cool metal bar is striking, yet it somehow works brilliantly. About 12 or 15 tables (seating for, I'd guess, 30 or 40) overlook various active areas of the creamery: the administrative office, the cheese-aging place, etc.

Our server, Katie, was cute. She was knowledgeable and helpful, and she affirmed our choices -- both of us opted for the Stuffed Burger (pictured, right). The burger is a touch on the pricey side at ten bucks, but it's AWESOME. Here's the description from the menu:

Organic grass-fed beef stuffed with spicy fromage, TPC cheese, bacon, and caramelized onion. With lettuce, tomato, red onion, and garlic aioli mayo on a toasted bun.

Of course, since the Dairy Bar is built in, we had no choice but to opt for milkshakes to complement our burgers and sweet potato chips. We had five flavors to select from, based on today's available ice creams. I chose the blackberry milkshake and my friend opted for the coffee milkshake.

After a terrific meal, we headed down to the milking area, where my friend (who, you'll recall, had taken the tour of the Creamery previously) showed me around and explained to me all the things that go into running an artisan dairy.

When we got to the milking room and I was thoroughly blown away by all the things that go into actually milking a cow (Thanks for nothing, Carmel-Clay Schools), we were intrigued by a large, blue, bin-like, bucket thing with pink things hanging off of it. As we got a closer look, we assumed it was some sort of teaching tool, to show people what a cow's teats are like. The teats were evenly spaced out, about 8 or 10 on a bin.

We tried to deduce from just looking at the device how it worked and how it would educate and delight tour-goers of all ages and nationalities, but I had to reach right up and touch it and, honestly, give one a squeeze. Just, you know, to see.

Well! I am here to tell you, friends, that it is inadvisable to just go up and squeeze teats, even if there's no one else around.

Apparently, there was some leftover water in the bin (or in the teat) from the last time the milking room had been toured. It ended up ... wait for it ... wait for it ... wait for it ... squirting right in my face, all over my jacket and shirt. At which point, giggling like 13-year-olds, we decided to beat a hasty retreat.

But it was just beginning to snow, and the twenty-yard walk to my friend's truck all of a sudden seemed like twenty miles. (Being cold and wet is not my bag, baby.) Luckily, it wasn't all that much water, and we hustled back to the truck, activated the seat warmers, and I was good to go in no time.

Therefore:

THE LOFT AT TRADERS POINT CREAMERY
  • Meal: A+ (Stuffed burger, medium well, sweet potato chips)
  • Dessert: A+ (Blackberry milkshake)
  • Self-Guided Tour: B (Ended up wet, albeit as a result of my own hilarious ineptitude)

3 comments:

K.T. said...

I want to take Trevor!

Scott S. Semester said...

I think he would love it -- they have Farmers Markets and stuff, too, so schedule your visit for maximum funosity.

Nat said...

It's a great place, but I don't suggest going there during high bee season. I also warn against touching unknown teats.