Real Food, Real Indiana

Welcome to the Indiana Foodways, a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to the celebration, promotion and preservation of the authentic food culture of Indiana. We are a membership organization of inquisitive eaters, good cooks, culinary historians, chefs, food journalists, restaurateurs, culinary tourists, artisans and manufacturers.

Our membership encompasses a field to table spectrum from agriculture to fine dining, with emphasis on all the specialty foods, farm markets, diners and hands-on restaurants in between that are so dear to the hearts of Midwesterners who love real food.

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Tales from the Trails Blog

  • Mecca of Food

    Posted on Monday, September 11, 2017

    Mecca is to many..... the Mecca of Food. Mecca Tavern located in Mecca (Parke County) population 330. It became a town in 1833 and is just six miles west of Rockville, Indiana. The town houses one of the beautiful Mecca Covered Bridge on the National Registry for Historic Places. (To learn more about how the city of Mecca and the Mecca Covered Bridge was named click here)

    The tavern itself is the oldest Tavern in Parke County established in 1899. (Their tag line is "Oldest bar in Parke County and we have the floors to prove it".) Founded in 1899 by the Roberts Family and surviving population and economic decline, the tavern has really remained the epicenter for the community. A gather place to have a libation, good food, and catch up on the town news. (21 and older only)

    What started out as a longtime dream of owner and local football coach, Brad Sanders, turned reality and a family affair at Mecca Tavern. Brad's Aunt, Susie Schilling, is the head cook. This lady may not be a professionally trained chef, but she has people coming from all over the Midwest to try her food. Brad's wife, Patty and Mother, Pam, are also heavily involved in the restaurant.

    I immediately fell in love with this restaurant as it reminded me of my Grandfather's Tavern. The shotgun type bar with seating inside and patio seating outside. It is quaint and like a step back in time with wood flooring. It is simple in its décor but the food sets it apart from other taverns. So much of their limited menu is popular which is what makes this place a must taste place in Indiana. Initially, the tavern had limited food but as word of mouth traveled, the menu has grown too!

    The Meathead Burgers range from 1/4lb to 1 pound Burgers using Clinton Spindles Meat, a locally owned Meat Company, in Indiana. Patted and grilled to perfection. The 8oz and 1 pound Ribeye Steak are specials on Saturday, but also available in 8oz all week long.

    The Weekend Specials on Friday Nights are Catfish and Frog Leg Dinners. The weekend specials whether seafood, steak, or sandwiches bring in the crowds, so be sure to time your visits accordingly.

    The recent addition has been the Hoosier Favorite, the Pork Tenderloin Sandwich. Available in grilled or breaded. Susie Schilling uses her own special breading to make the succulent sandwich. It is a HUGE sandwich much like other tenderloins in State. However, Susie has a demand of the Tenderloins from her special breading and the hand pounded to perfection. Her breading is spot on and is the talk of Tenderloin Lovers from afar. (They are currently in the running for best Pork Tenderloin Sandwich in Indiana by Visit Indiana, Vote Here.

    Whether you're visiting the beautiful bridges of Parke County or simply passing through, make sure Mecca Tavern is a stop along the way. You will be enamored by the history, friendly people, and fantastic food. Mecca Tavern is currently a member of Indiana Foodways Alliance's Tenderloin Trail, Here Fishy Fishy and Burgers, Brews and Dogs Trails. (NOTE: The Mecca Tavern is 21 and Older ONLY) Blog by Lindsey Skeen

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  • Celebrate The Sandwich All Year Long

    Posted on Friday, September 8, 2017

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    http://edibleindy.ediblecommunities.com/eat/celebrate-sandwich-all-year-long

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  • A True Farm To Table Store - Turkey Run Gas & Grille

    Posted on Thursday, August 10, 2017

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    Turkey Run Gas and Grill located in Marshall, is a great stop whether passing through the Covered Bridge County or a stop to refuel after a day on the water. During our first visit we were taken aback with this quaint convenience store/restaurant right off of Hwy 47 in Parke County.

    Looking like just another gas station/convenience store, upon entering, we immediately noticed there is much more to this place. We met with Bret Vandermolen, (owns boasts many trades within the McCurdy Company) and Managers, Becca Jones and Lora Gildon. They shared how the farm to table concept is not new to them and is a welcomed everyday function.

    Inside the store, a restaurant is nestled to the left, with a window placed for ordering. All the food options are available on a menu board. They work very hard to use the freshest ingredients from garden veggies to specialty cheese from a company with Kentucky ties. Most of the selections available are farm to table.

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    The locally sourced tenderloin is hand pounded and breaded to perfection. The popular Hoosier pork tenderloin we tried was so succulent! The freshness of the pork was very apparent and was loaded with fresh veggies from the garden too. It was Bret's first time trying a Pork Tenderloin Sandwich so we had some fun with that! Follow us on twitter to catch the video! @indianafoodwaysalliance The beef for the burgers is made fresh from a local farm and is 100% Beef. There are no hormones and no antibiotics used from McCurdy Farms and Cattle Company. The delicious burger was topped with fixings from their garden. To our surprise, a special cheese was used called St. Jerome. The cheese is made from a local dairy farm, Kenny's Farmhouse Cheese, in Kentucky. It is hard cheese with a smooth rind, flower notes like cheddar and a creaminess like Gouda. I love that they are using locally sourced products even for toppings!!

    During our visit, we tried the Beef Burger and Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches but the side was just as much as a treat than anything! What goes best with these signature sandwiches? Why an Indiana Favorite, hand breaded pickles, of course! I'm picky about fried pickles so I was pleasantly surprised, the breading is nailed down to perfection! Lightly breaded with just enough spice in the blend! They have so many options for snacks, lunch, or dinner so make this a priority stop while you're in Marshall!

    Recently I took the family on a 15 mile canoe trip - Husband and 3 boys in tow. We used Turkey Run Canoe & Camping, also owned by Joe McCurdy. If you want to enthrall yourself in to the break taking views of Sugar Creek....go canoeing!! Amazing memories, we broke a few lures trying to catch the giant Carp and only tipped once! After a long day on the water it was a must to stop at Turkey Run Gas and Grille. We cooled off with Ice Cream! They have several different varieties available of Glover's Ice Cream, which is also an Indiana Company. Alt Text

    The convenience store part of the Turkey Run Gas & Grille offers variety of Camping supplies too. They have recently renovated the convenience area so stop in today and check out this hidden gem in Marshall, Indiana!

    Turkey Run Gas & Grille are on Indiana Foodways Alliance's Ice Cream for Ice Cream, Tenderloin and Homegrown Trails.

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  • More Tails for the Trails:

    7/25/17 - Aaron's Lakehouse
    7/21/17 - Collom's General Store
    7/15/17 - Tasty Treats at the Tasty Freeze
    7/13/17 - A Biker's Paradise at Thirty-Six Saloon
    7/12/17 - A Little Color to Brighten Your Day at the Yellow Umbrella

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