So what is going on in February?

Coming to Bloomington in February and not know of anything to do?  Have no fear!  Follow the link below to the Monroe County CVB’s listing of all of Bloomington’s upcoming events for the month of February!  Events cover the spectrum of interests.  You are sure to find something that will make your stay in Bloomington both entertaining and memorable!

Take a look at Febraury’s event calender here.

26. January 2013 by tranard
Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Good Music, Good Friends, Good Brew

How has everyone been doing?  We are all in the thick of the holidays and I am sure a good number of you could use a drink.  What is that?  You do not want watered down liquor or cheap beer from one of the college bars?  Although your request is pretty hard to come by in a college town; I think that I found a place that just might give you what you need.

The Tap is the new craft beer bar that recently opened on the corner of Kirkwood and College Ave.  This intersection is on the southwest side of the downtown square.  Now if you are hungry then you better stop by somewhere else first because The Tap does not concern itself with food.  If you want a fine red wine then go somewhere else because they do not worry about serving wine or any liquor.  The only thing that The Tap cares about is serving up a range of delicious, varied, and delicious beers.  Did I say delicious twice?  I’ll say it three times!  DELICIOUS BEER!

Every day the beers on tap get cycled out so you can have new choices every single day.  If bottled beer is more your style then they have a menu of 500 different bottled beers that you can try.  Now these are not just 500 variations of Bud Light mind you.  There were beers on that menu whose name I could not even pronounce but I sure could drink them!  Every single one that I tried was so good and really had a unique flavor.  I would also like to add that they have these things called beer shots…you’ll just have to try those out for yourselves!

Prices on these beers varied greatly so do not just close your eyes and randomly select a beer.  Some of them were very pricey.  Make sure you know what you are getting before the bill catches you off guard.  That being said these beers are quality offerings and do deserve to have a little bit extra spent on them.

Lastly, I would like to add that The Tap does have live music on many nights!  The performers vary in style but will all provide ample entertainment to accompany your drinks.  These acts usually start around 9:30pm on most occasions but I believe these times are subject to change.

You can visit The Tap’s website here to check out the menu and event calendar.

03. December 2012 by tranard
Categories: Bar, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A Day-Trip is in Order

OK, so now I’m going to let you all in on something that really gets my blood pumping.  This is a little spot in the Bloomington area that I guarantee many visitors to Bloomington do not know about.  Actually, I would venture to say that maybe 5% of visitors to Bloomington know about this.  It is something so awe-inspiring that specific people have traveled cross-country to see it.  It is something so great that it ranks among the top 3 in the WORLD in its category.  It is something so colossal that its shadow can be seen from space! Ok, I’m not sure about that last part but this thing is monstrous.  What is it that dwarfs everything around it for miles?  This thing, this titan, this wonder is the Tulip Train Trestle!

So it might not be quite what you were expecting but the Tulip Trestle is a very neat destination for anyone with an afternoon to kill and a taste for adventure.  The Tulip Trestle is the longest train trestle in the United States and 3rd longest in the world!  This makes it a destination not only for train enthusiasts (which I know we all are at heart) but also for folks who just like to see big stuff. I mean c’mon, people travel to see giant balls of yarn.

If you are not content with viewing the trestle from ground level there is a path running from the base of the structure that leads to the top.  I am not promoting this because technically it is illegal to trespass on the trestle.  I personally might have ventured up it a few dozen times but it was wrong and no one should do it…unless you really want to….and no one is looking…but for the record I am not promoting it…even if it is really neat!

Here is a link to the Wikipedia page for the Tulip Trestle that has a bit of background information available for you.

A Google Map of the simplest route to the trestle is linked here.


Longest Trestle in the United States


07. October 2012 by tranard
Categories: Destination | Leave a comment

A Simple Solution To A Frustrating Problem

One issue that guests have been having lately here at the inn is the lack of restaurants outside of sandwich/pizza/burger joints that provide delivery services to the inn.  They want more variety! Guests have traveled all day, want a full meal and are not really jumping at the prospect of venturing out at night in an unknown town to find a place to eat. They want good food that can be delivered to them.

If this situation sums up yours right now then Straight to your Door is here to help.  By visiting you can have full meals from a variety of restaurants around town delivered to the inn for your convenience.  All you do is type in the inn’s address which is 310 North Grant Street and you’ll be given a list of all the participating restaurants in town.  From there you put in your order, pay online, and Straight to your Door will deliver your meal to the inn without you ever having to leave your room!

This is really a great service for those who are worn out from a long  journey and just want to relax.



29. September 2012 by tranard
Categories: Guest Recommendations, Restaurants | Leave a comment

A Quick Guide to Bloomington Nightlife

Recently at the Inn, I have had numerous guests come up and ask me where the best places are to go on whatever given night.  I really find myself a bit confused when answering this question just because there are literally dozens of great nightlife locations around town!  It really just depends on what you are looking for!   Everyone has their own tastes so it is hard to assume that my favorite places would work for someone else.

To help all of you folks out who are curious as to how you should spend your evenings in Bloomington I have provided a link to the Nightlife page on the Visit Bloomington website.  This site gives a quick overview of some of the nightlife destinations across town while also providing links to their respective websites.

You can find the Visit Bloomington Nightlife page here.


08. September 2012 by tranard
Categories: Restaurants | Leave a comment

The Comedy Attic-The Funniest Bloomington Has To Offer!

Are you ever in a mood when you just feel like laughing?  I find myself with that good ol’ feeling quite often.  When I do I head on down to The Comedy Attic located at 123 S. Walnut Street.  The Comedy Attic is Indiana’s first and only full-time comedy club!   This place, though it looks humble enough brings in some of the most well-known comedic acts from all over the country.  For example, later this year Tim Meadows from Saturday Night Live fame and Michael Winslow from Police Academy, Spaceballs, and Gremlins will perform.  These are just 2 of the many great comedians who come through Bloomington.  If one of these national acts are not coming through Bloomington, The Comedy Attic also has its own roster of up and coming artists who will really get your sides hurting.

Show schedules are Thursdays at 8pm; Fridays at 8pm and 10:30; Saturdays at 8pm and 10:30. Open Mic Nights are Wednesdays at 8pm.  Tickets usually range from 8 to 20 dollars depending on the act and the seating section.  There is also a two item minimum for each show.  That just means that you can pick any combination of food/beverage that you like and that is all you have to buy.  If you cannot pick 2 items then a charge for the 2 cheapest items they have will be added to your bill.  They do this to guarantee that they can afford to bring in great acts week after week.

I really do endorse going to The Comedy Attic at least once just to try it out.  It is a fun option for a night out that doesn’t involve the usual plan of dinner and a movie.  You can check their schedule of acts on their website here.

30. August 2012 by tranard
Categories: Comedy Club | 2 comments

The Students Are Upon Us! Where Shall I Drink?!

Howdy everybody.  You might have noticed that it has been awhile since my previous post.  First off I would like to apologize for my absence.  Today I wanted to address something that I have not touched on as of yet.  Today I wanted to recommend a good bar for all of you folks whose idea of a good time does not include head rattling house music or thousands upon thousands of college students breathing down your neck.  Given that Bloomington is a college town it can seem like a daunting task to find a bar to share a drink with friends that has not been completely overrun with students.  These bars are very hard to come by but I know of one where you can spend time without waves of students.

The Alley Bar located at 210 West Kirkwood Avenue is a small little dive where everybody knows your name.  Ok, not really..they won’t know you at all when you first arrive but they are very friendly and a few drinks later everyone will be best friends!  This bar is busy on the weekends like any other bar but the atmosphere is a lot less hectic than the bars closer to campus.  Who knows, you might even be able to go the whole night without having to sit through one Ke$ha song! For those of you who don’t know who she is…please for your sake keep it that way!

The Alley Bar offers a good selection of liquors to choose from but their selection of craft beers is what you need to focus on.  They get new types in all of the time and it is very neat to try beers that you otherwise would have never even known about;  peach beer anyone?

You can reach their website here.

Do you have any suggestions for folks who do not want to contend with students while out for drinks?  Leave any suggestions in the comments section below!


20. August 2012 by tranard
Categories: Bar | Leave a comment

The Village Deli-You Will NOT Leave Hungry!

Who likes getting what they paid for?  I’m pretty sure most would agree that if you pay 10 bucks for something that it would be nice to get 10 bucks worth of product in return.  I’ve found over the past few months that I am fairly cynical about this when it comes to restaurants.  Many times I have paid 25 dollars for about 10 dollars worth of food.  Is the food good? Of course it is but it would be nice to have more than 2 bites worth of food on my plate.  More often than not when I am waiting on my food to get to my table I am secretly preparing myself for the crushing realization that I have ordered what amounts to a gourmet kids meal.

This was exactly the way I was feeling as I waited for my breakfast at The Village Deli.  I had ordered a three egg omelet with cheese and sausage (my arteries thanked me later).  I sat there at the table wondering what it would be like since this was my first time at The Village Deli.  Would it be a baby portion?  Would it be a hearty amount?  I had no idea and the tension at the table was palpable.

When the omelet finally arrived I could have sworn that they had used three ostrich eggs to make it.  It was HUGE!  Not to mention that it looked like they stuffed 5 pounds of sausage and cheese into the thing.  This omelet had the rare trait of being as large as a child and delicious.  I willed myself to eat every last bite and by the end I was completely satisfied and about 6 pounds heavier.  It was a good day!

I can only speak for their breakfasts but my experience with The Village Deli is that you get your money’s worth and more!  Omelets that are packed to the brim with goodness and pancakes that could double as area rugs.  Those pancakes are huge but are not dried out or crumbly like many large pancakes I’ve had in the past.  All I can say is that I had a big smile on my face as I was leaving The Village Deli.  In my book my money was well spent.

You can reach The Village Deli’s website here.

Have you got your money’s worth at The Village Deli?  Put your experiences in the comments section below!

03. August 2012 by tranard
Categories: Restaurants | Leave a comment

Sweet Claire Has Got It Going On!

Ok, right now I’m about to hit you with some top secret knowledge.  Sweet Claire gourmet bakery located at 309 East Third Street has some truly phenomenal food!  I have lived in Bloomington for most of my life and I am kicking myself that I was not able to find out about this place earlier.  A week or so ago my fiancé brought me a sandwich for lunch.  My first impression was not really a good one.  I watched her sit a large blob of tin foil on my desk and I could only assume that there was something inside of all that foil.  Despite the funky wrapping job I was welcomed by the smell of the bread and the very appealing looks of the sandwich inside the fortress of foil.  It was a very healthy portion of ham with a large piece of amazing mozzarella cheese “sandwiched” between two pieces of some of the best focaccia bread I have had the pleasure of eating.  I am no food critic and my tastes are by no means always “good” but this sandwich was giggle inducing.  I really think while I was eating I giggled. That’s how much I liked it.  It is odd but it is the truth and I am not one to lie!

I have Sweet Claire gourmet bakery to thank for that magical giggle inducing sandwich.  While doing a bit of research I found that the owner of Sweet Claire is a graduate of the Artisanal Bread Baking course at the French Culinary Institute in New York City.  No wonder the bread was out of this world.  Along with sandwiches Sweet Claire also has a wide selection of breads, pastries, and cookies.  I also had the pleasure of having some of their cookies and I was not disappointed.  The folks at Sweet Claire know what they’re doing!

This place is really a treat and is now one of my favorite places to grab a quick lunch.  It is also very close to the Grant Street Inn so you all should get your taste buds ready and go see what is going on down at Sweet Claire gourmet bakery!  You won’t regret it!

Access the Sweet Claire website for current offerings and business hours here.

Access the Sweet Claire menu here.

23. July 2012 by tranard
Categories: Restaurants | 2 comments

Grand Opening Party For New Upland Brewery Location!

Pardon me for the late notice but if you are lounging around today between 4 and 8pm you need to make your way over to the grand opening party for the new Upland Brewery location!  Upland Brewery is one of Indiana’s premier breweries and one of my personal favorite places to get a bite to eat.  The new location is at 4060 Profile Parkway right off of North Curry Pike on the west side of Bloomington.  So make your way down to the new brewery and help yourself to some food, live music, and their award winning beers!  Their facebook page can be reached here.

15. July 2012 by tranard
Categories: Events | 1 comment

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