Thursday, July 5, 2012

Tie Dye Grill

One kid at camp, and the other with not much to do, I convinced my son to be my lunch date to try a new place with me.  No matter how obvious it is to them how much I like to try new places, my kids like to torment me by always wanting to go to the same places.  Luckily, I was convincing on this particular day.  Unfortunately, when we got to the Tie Dye Grill, the place was already jammed and there was a wait (it was like 11:30 too).  My son was not overly impressed with my choice so far.

Somehow I convinced him to stay (mainly because I had no idea where to go close by as an alternative) and it wasn’t too long before we got a table.  The service staff pretty much completely ignored the people waiting for tables though, and there was no sign in sheet or anything, which was a little awkward because there were two doors and people coming in the whole time. We ended up talking amongst ourselves to determine who was there first. A sign in sheet or a hostess or something might be helpful here.

It was a Tuesday, which is their pork tenderloin day, and one of the reasons I wanted to go on that particular day.  I sort of like the fact that they only do them once a week, and it made me believe that are working hard to make them fresh and to order if they are only making the effort once a week.  I am not sure if that is why it was so crowded, or if they have this kind of crowd every day, but I will say that pretty much everyone was ordering the pork tenderloin sandwich that I could see.

Naturally I went with it, and ordered it along with onion rings as a side ($7.95 for the sandwich, not sure on the onion rings, but must have been close to $5).  Like I said I liked that they are making the tenderloins to order and it was very hot when it came out, unfortunately, I think maybe they are making so many of them, the oil got a little cold and the breading wasn’t as crispy and crunchy as I would like (and it was a little greasy). It had a nice “chicken fried” flavor, with decent seasoning to it, and the bun was a good size and nicely toasted, but the breading was just a little underdone and a little soft.   They serve it automatically with shredded lettuce and mayo, which was fine with me, but on my son’s burger, oy, not so much.

My son wanted a burger, which I have heard they are also sort of known for, but strangely was not a choice on the kids’ menu. I told him if that is what he wanted, he could just order a regular burger ($7.95).  He also got fries which they must have charged a fair amount for as well. The burger was very good.  My son was thrilled to that it was still pink in the middle (he is very strict about medium rareness in beef). Honestly, other than the mayo and lettuce, which I had to scrape off very thoroughly, he loved this burger and is still talking about it. He really wants to take his Dad here.  I have to say, it had a great flavor of charcoal and it was very tender and juicy.  It was clearly not overworked when formed into a patties—it was very irregular in shape and very tasty.  The fries were just your typical foodservice fries—hot and crisp though and honestly, just as good as the onion rings.  Overall I would probably skip either one and try a different side.  Again, the bun was nicely toasted which is always a plus in my book.

Like I said, just watch your prices. We ordered way too much food, and I didn’t realize how big the portions were.  But what I mentioned here (and the fries were a half order) plus two drinks was close to $25 in all, which is a little crazy for lunch if you ask me, especially with a kid (regular kids meals are only $3 and come with fries, but like I said he wanted a burger).  But I like the family vibe in the place, and the fact that a local spot in a sea of chains is doing so well. 

Tie Dye Grill
1311 North Shadeland Ave,
Indy 46219
Tie Dye Grill on Urbanspoon


  1. We love the Tie Dye Grill, glad you reviewed it. My husband likes the "brown chicken brown cow" sandwich. There are several locally owned restaurants in that area: Oishi Sushi, DePalma's, Historic Steer In, Papa Roux, and Irvington is just around the corner as well...hope you will check out more of what that part of town has to offer soon.

  2. My family and I went to eat there about two years ago and had the same issue with the wait. There isn't anywhere to stand and we were basically hovering over other diners. It was really awkward. There were flies everywhere. We looked at each other, left, and went to Steak 'n Shake. I like local restaurants, but this place was just too chaotic.

  3. I was really excited about the Tie Dye Grill - for a while I worked nearby and enjoyed eating there (though it was always a spendy lunch). Couldn't agree more about the cluster____ when there are people waiting for tables.

    But I have to add, I got REALLY soured on them after signing up for their email list... although I appreciate that they're active in the community, they are rather political... and some of the sides they were taking seemed polarizing (i.e. one of the themes was defense of the police involved in a brutality incident).

  4. We love the this place, but I agree it's confusing (and crowded) during the rush. So far we've enjoyed everything we've ordered there. One thing that will always stick with me is this: One time we showed up 5 min before closing (forgot that they aren't always open all day) and we turned around after seeing the hours on the door. The server ran out and stopped us, saying they were still open and please come in. Most places the servers would 1. debate over who had to serve you and 2. make you feel very unwelcome for coming in at the close of business. Gotta love a place that really wants your business :)

  5. I hate them! I placed an order for a plain burger. It came with cheese. I am allergic to cheese. They were insistent I ordered cheese and refused to discuss it with me.  Refused to credit me or to replace the order. Nasty attitudes.We ordered almost daily from this place and this is how they do business.