MacNiven's Restaurant & Bar
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Taps: 14 / Bottles: 45
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 34 | Reviews: 25 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by BAbaracus:
4.13/5 rDev -0.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$$
So what exactly distinguishes a Scottish pub from an English or Irish one, you ask? James Bond pictures, apparently. However, this isnt to imply that Macnivens is just some faceless chain pub knockoff by any means. It has the typical Brit pub favoritism for dark wood and a cozy ambience not overtaken by a blaring jukebox or dozens of TVs. The dozen or so taps are well chosen, with the current prize being the Hebrew 9, a tasty NY concoction representing 9 different malts and 9 different types of hops. Also represented are taps from Tennants, Bells, Uplands and the usual Brit pub fare (Guinness, Bass, etc). The bottled selection is really where its at. Macnivens has a full four panel menu printed up of their bottled selection with prices and a brief description of each. Overall the bottled selection favors imports, with both UK & Belgian beers getting equal props, but there are also a wealth of good US micros. Service was knowledgable and attentive, but Ive come to take that for granted in a US Brit-style pub; its one of the reasons I frequent them to the inclusion of, say, sports bars for instance. All in all a fine addition to the downtown Indy beer scene.
05-24-2006 20:45:56 | More by BAbaracus
More User Reviews:
4.2/5 rDev +1%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.75 | $$
MacNiven's is in one of a series of older buildings that together form what appears to be shaping up as an Arts and Entertainment District near downtown Indy. Massachusetts Avenue isn't the easiest road to navigate, and parking looks like it can be at a premium at times, but we found MacNiven's to be well worth the minimal fuss required. Note: MacNivens is an over-21 establishment. (noted on their website).
When you first enter the establishment you can go toward the right to enter the bar, or to the left to sit in the dining room. We chose the left, and were greeted with an old-school British pub decor, complete with wood floors and dark colors (or maybe that should be colours) throughout. Our server, Kimmie, was very friendly and helped us navigate through the menu, daily specials and drink options. Haggis is apparently one of the house specialties, and - get this - they even have vegetarian haggis available. I wasn't feeling that courageous, but it might be something cool to try next time I'm in town.
For drinks, I went with one of my favorites: Robert the Bruce by Three Floyds (Three Floyds sightings are a wonderful by-product of traveling through the Midwest), while one of my companions chose Arcadia's Whitsun Ale. My companion truly enjoyed the Whitsun; in fact, it's become her favorite wheat.
The menu has standard British pub fare, along with some rather intriguing vegetarian options apart from the aforementioned haggis. I went with a vegetarian club sandwich and a cup of their house-made vegetarian chili. The club was very good, with avocado, alfalfa sprouts, cheese, mushrooms and such - and the chili was delicious.
My companions ordered the French Dip and the fish & chips; the French dip was reported to be very good (a 9 on a 10 scale), and the au jus received special mention for being thick and hearty.
The fish and chips didn't fare so well, receiving a 6-7 on a 10 scale; the batter fell a bit short of expectations, but it was far from being unacceptable.
Overall, MacNiven's was a very nice stop on our journey through the Midwest, and we will definitely stop by again the next time we're in town. If you're local or just passing through, this wee Scottish pub is definitely worth a try.
06-10-2014 19:21:48 | More by OldeSchool
MacNiven's Restaurant & Bar in Indianapolis, IN
92 out of 100 based on 34 ratings.