Indiana University Bloomington

Guide to Bloomington


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Places to Eat


Grad Student Recommendations

Anyetsang's Little Tibet: 415 East Fourth. Excellent Tibetan cuisine.

Bloomington Sandwich Company: Kirkwood and Washington. They make their own corned beef! Great selection of sandwiches.

Darn Good Soup: On the west side of the Square. Darn good soup. Well worth the walk.

Falafels: Kirkwood and Dunn. Also has carryout.

Finch's: Kirkwood between Indiana and Dunn. Fantastic beer selection, and great pizzettas (try the Dordogne!!).

IU Cinema: Inexpensive tickets that you should purchase in advance to a diverse range of excellent films.

Noodles and Co. Kirkwood and Indiana.

Taste of India: 316 E. 4th Street. Has a great all-you-can-eat lunch buffet for a pretty reasonable price.


World cuisine

  • Anatolia's: 405 East 4th St. Mediterranean and Turkish cuisine. No alcohol license, but highly recommended.
  • Anyetsang's Little Tibet: 415 East Fourth. Tibetan cuisine.
  • Café Django: 116 N. Grant. Eclectic Tibetan/Indian/Italian menu.
  • Dat's: 211 S. Grant St. Cajun. Carry out or dine-in. Cheap, fast, and good.
  • Esan Thai: Behind Shanti, at Kirkwood and Lincoln. Nice and spicy Thai food.
  • Falafels: Kirkwood and Dunn. Also has carryout.
  • The Irish Lion: (212 West Kirkwood Avenue) Authentic Irish specialties and a wide selection of Irish and British beers on tap. One of the few places in Bloomington you may purchase beer by the yard. It's a bit more of a walk from campus than some of the other restaurants, but well worth it for the atmosphere.
  • Samira: 100 W 6th St. Downtown, on the north side of the square. Afghani. Upscale and expensive (aprox. $20 per person, including beverage), but definitely worth the money!
  • Siam House: Fourth and Dunn. Good Thai food in a cozy atmosphere. Can be expensive, but well worth the cost. They also have an excellent all-you-can eat lunch buffet.
  • Taste of India: 316 E. 4th Street. Has a great all-you-can-eat lunch buffet for a pretty reasonable price.


  • Aver’s: Carryout and Delivery only. Fabulous, award-winning pizza.
  • Café Pizzeria: On Kirkwood, near campus.
  • Max's Place: On the square. Excellent pizza.
  • Mother Bear’s Pizza: Near Third and Jordan. It has the fourth best pizza in the nation. Beer is served here.
  • Nick’s English Hut: Kirkwood main strip, not far from the Sample Gates. Good pizza, as well as standard pub fare.

Casual Dining & Sandwiches

  • Bear’s Place: Near Third and Jordan. Bear’s serves Mother Bear’s pizza and various tasty sandwiches. It also serves alcohol, and you can catch live music and Ryder films here.
  • Bloomington Bagel Company: Near Dunn and Kirkwood, across from the People’s Park, and a new smaller location at Seventh and Morton. Close to campus, nice atmosphere, great bagels, sandwiches, soups, and pastries. Reasonable prices.
  • Butch’s Grillacatessen and Eatzeria: 120 E. 7th St. A HUGE menu of deli food, pizza, pasta, calzones, bakery items, and more. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
  • Chipotle: Kirkwood between Dunn and Grant.
  • Dagwood’s: Indiana, across from the Law School. Dagwood’s has huge sandwiches and subs at a pretty reasonable price. Dagwood’s also delivers.
  • Darn Good Soup: On the west side of the Square. Darn good soup.
  • Laughing Planet: Kirkwood and Grant. Good, healthy burritos, chips, and soups for cheap. Upstairs from (and run by the same folks as) Soma Coffeehouse.
  • Noodles and Co. Kirkwood and Indiana.
  • Panda Express. Next to Noodles and Co.
  • Roots on the Square: 124 N Walnut on the northeast corner of the square. Bloomington’s only all-vegetarian restaurant.
  • The Village Deli: Kirkwood, 2 blocks from campus. This is a popular deli with decent prices (although it’s famously slow). They have a super vegetarian chili, good sandwiches, and a wonderful breakfast menu.
  • Yogi’s: 519 E. 10th Street, near campus. Great beer selection, tons of TV tuned to sports, and traditional pub fare. Good fun if you’re a sports fan.


  • The Bakehouse: Courthouse Square (and a new location on E. Third, by the mall). Great bread, sandwiches, salads, and coffee.
  • City Bakery: 1316 E. Third. Great little carryout bakery.

Coffeehouses & Breakfast Joints

  • The Bakehouse: Courthouse Square (and also on E. Third, by the mall). Great bread, sandwiches, salads, and coffee.
  • The Runcible Spoon: Sixth Street, between Dunn and Grant. The Runcible Spoon is a great place to sit and study, enjoy conversation with friends, or just to go and relax. The Spoon serves gourmet coffee and delicious pastries, along with the usual breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
  • Soma: Kirkwood and Grant. Underneath the Laughing Planet. Great place to study—couches and a cool atmosphere.
  • Starbucks: Starbucks coffee is available inside the Union at the IMUG or at 110 S Indiana Ave (just across the street and South of the Sample Gates; it has a nice ambience—and that’s coming from someone who avoids Starbucks like the plague. Located just around the corner from the Sample Gates).
  • The Pourhouse: 314 E. Kirkwood. Not-for-profit coffee house with plenty of space for studying.

    Upscale Dining

    (Although nothing in Bloomington actually seems to have a dress code)

    • Finch’s Brasserie: 514 E. Kirkwood. Mediterranean-American menu using local and/or organic ingredients. Classy but comfortable atmosphere; supporter of the Slow-Food Movement; extensive wine and beer selection.
    • FARM Bloomington: 108 E Kirkwood. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner, all made with local/regional ingredients.
    • Grazie! Italian Eatery: 6th Street on the square. Great Italian food and drinks, comfortable atmosphere, with the occasional jazz band. Great place for a date!
    • Janko’s Little Zagreb: On the corner of Sixth and Morton. This is not Yugoslav, so don’t expect to find real Yugoslav delicacies.
    • Malibu Grill: On the square. Tasty entrees, not too expensive.
    • Restaurant Tallent: 208 N Walnut. “Slow food”-style, with a (fantastic but expensive) menu that changes seasonally and features local produce.
    • Scholars’ Inn: 717 N. College Ave. Classy, tasty, somewhat expensive. They have terrific Sunday brunches and desserts, cheap martinis on Thursdays, and giant spicy Bloody Marys.
    • The Uptown Café: Kirkwood, between Washington and Walnut. It’s romantic and classy, and they play nice jazz music.



Drinks, Dancing & Music

  • Atlas Bar: College and Fourth Street. South of fourth street, Atlas has no sign, but look for the maps in the windows. It's next door to Serendipity. They also have ski-ball.
  • Bear’s Place: Third Street and Jordan. A five-minute walk from Ballantine Hall, Bear’s is probably the best place in Bloomington to catch live jazz (both local and touring). It’s also not a bad place to go for a drink with friends, as there are specials every night. The Ryder film series shows some of its movies in Bear’s back room (see below). On other nights the back room features karaoke. Open on Sundays.
  • The Bishop: Walnut and Fourth. Good music with cheap covers. Great beer selection.
  • Lennie’s Brewpub: In Crosstown Plaza. Beer is brewed on the premises, and each batch is slightly different. Excellent appetizers too.
  • Crazy Horse: Kirkwood, just west of the square next to the Irish Lion. It has a wide variety of beers from all over the world. Grill food. More of a grad-atmosphere than Kilroy’s. Open on Sundays.
  • The Irish Lion: Kirkwood, just west of the square. Drinks, drinks, and more drinks, plus authentic Irish pub food menu. Dead animals on the walls, including a particularly ferocious-looking squirrel.
  • Max’s Place: 109 W. 7th Street. Fun, laidback venue for live music, drinks, and food.
  • Nick’s English Hut: Kirkwood main strip, not far from the Sample Gates. Nick’s is probably Bloomington’s most famous bar. There are pool tables and big screen TVs upstairs and there’s a good, sizeable grill menu. Televisions are conveniently placed for the sports-fan crowd. Open on Sundays. A favorite hang-out for many English grads.
  • Rhino’s: Walnut, three blocks south of the Square. Bloomington’s only all-ages venue. Lots of punk, hardcore, and various other genres that end with the –core suffix.
  • Scotty’s Brewhouse: 302 N. Walnut. Good food, extensive selection of beers, good place to watch the game—most booths have their own TVs.
  • The Root Cellar: 108 East Kirkwood, inside FARMbloomington. Bar/live music venue with great atmosphere, an old speakeasy feel, and music events every weekend. Thursday nights are “Lounge Nights,” Friday nights feature performances by local bands, and Saturday nights are reserved for “Soul in the Hole,” with DJs playing old-school soul.
  • Uncle Elizabeth’s: 1614 W. Third Street. Uncle E’s is a bar/club that caters to the GLBT community. Open seven nights a week, with all sorts of events—karaoke, drag shows, male pole dancers, etc.—scheduled weekly.
  • Upland Brewpub: 350 W 11th. Microbrewery with a solid food menu. For $5.95 you can purchase a sampler of all of Upland’s beers, served in order of increasing hoppiness.
  • Upstairs Pub: Kirkwood and Dunn, upstairs (of course). Dart boards, pool tables, and fooz ball. Wednesday night drink specials. Frequented by professional students (Law, Med., Business, etc.)
  • The Video Saloon: A well-worn hipster haven where locals and grad students mingle in harmony. Probably the hardest bar to find in Bloomington, the Vid is located on the west side of Walnut St., directly across from the Bluebird and Rockit’s Pizza. Enter through the unmarked glass door between Black’s Corner Store and Brother’s Pub on Walnut. Pool tables, dart boards, and a video game or two (hence the name)
  • Yogi’s: Tenth and Indiana. Happy hour (Friday 4-6) features free appetizers and 10 wings for a dollar. Cheap drinks, darts, and pool tables. Lots of tvs for watching sports. One of the favorite hangouts of the English department crowd. Open on Sundays.

Movies & Cultural Entertainment

  • The Art Museum: Yes, there is one on campus, near the fountain. Designed by I.M. Pei, this museum has works by such artists as Jackson Pollock, anthropological exhibits from all over the world, and no right angles except where the floor meets the wall. Great visiting exhibits. Well worth browsing.
  • Buskirk-Chumley Theater: On Kirkwood, this nice old theater has tons of events, including live music and classic films.
  • The Indiana Memorial Union: The Union is the largest student union in the world. It has several eating options, including the Tudor Room (pretty fancy, but not too expensive), the cafeteria (pretty average), the Commons (which includes a grill, sub shop, Pizza Hut, and Burger King), Starbucks, and Sugar ‘n Spice and Delights (both generally centered around sweets). Also in the Union are bowling alleys, pool tables, video games, and computer rooms (which you are entitled to use). There are also plenty of chairs, benches, and lounges to hang out, study, sleep or just escape from Ballantine.
  • IU Cinema: Inexpensive tickets that you should purchase in advance to a diverse range of excellent films.
  • The Lilly Library: The rare books, manuscripts, and special collections library of IU. Featuring a special exhibit on Charles Dickens in honor of his bicentennial.
  • Music: Contact the Jacobs School of Music for information concerning the amazing recitals and other concerts on campus (most of them free), and the IU Opera, which has a national reputation and new performances every couple weeks.

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