MacNiven's Restaurant & Bar

Bar, Eatery

339 Massachusetts Ave
Indianapolis, Indiana, 46204-2108
United States

(317) 632-7268 | map

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Reviews: 26 | Ratings: 43
Reviews by wlhagan3:
Photo of wlhagan3
3.78/5  rDev -9.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3

I been to MacNiven's twice. Once for dinner and once (more recently) for a beer and a snack. The weather was warm (this time) so the roll up windows at the front were open. The tap selection was good. Mix of ten or so imports and micros. They have a large bottle selection as well. I had a snifter of Founders Dirty Bastard Scotch Ale. First time on draft and pretty damn good. The hot wings we ordered were large and meaty but average on taste with the basic Durkee's Red Hot sauce as a coating.

We sat in the bar area and the bartender seemed to have a basic knowledge of beer when she explained the tap selection.

If you are downtown, this is a great place for a meal and a beer. Parking can be a problem on Mass. Ave.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Sludgeman
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.75

Visited on a Tuesday evening around dinner time.

From what I could see every beer under 7% ABV was a 20 oz for $6. Come prepared! And the beer of the day is only $4.50. So I had a 20 oz Alpha King very cheap compared to prices back home.

V - An old Scottish bar with lots of locals. Clean and bright. A bit of an alternative crowd. Hip part of town with other venues next door and across the street. 3.75

Sel - Good for an Scottish bar so do not let that dissuade you from coming if you think it means just Irish/Scottish They have a hand-pull. I had two Three Floyd beers - Alpha King and Robert the Bruce. 4

Ser - Friendly and informative. Great prices. 4.5

Q - good temp, clean glass but my Alpha King was served in a mug? 4

F - This place has haggis. I had fish and chips, which were fine. 3.75

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Photo of jadler16
4.68/5  rDev +11.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.75

Photo of neckbracesub
3.91/5  rDev -6.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

Photo of mwar
4.23/5  rDev +1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Photo of djgoodwi
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Photo of sgrechukhin
4.75/5  rDev +13.4%

Photo of sourdog
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%

Photo of Buschyfor3
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of gordavidson
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of spointon
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of indy351
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of mrjmann
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of OldeSchool
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
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.

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Photo of DGSchmitt
3.5/5  rDev -16.5%

Photo of danoble1
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of Tsar_Riga
4/5  rDev -4.5%

Photo of bertram
4/5  rDev -4.5%

Photo of KarlHungus
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of MSandahl23
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of barrett61
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

A- decent sized bar with a good table selection as well. Nicely lit and open. Appeared to be very clean. Some Scottish/English paraphernalia on the walls.

Q- the beers we had were of great quality and served at the right temperature and in correct glassware. I had a Three Floyd's Gumballhead (x2) and my wife had a Weinzeskaner Hefe.

Service-We were greeted right away upon sitting at the bar. Staff was friendly, knowledgeable, and genuine.

Selection-Above average selection. I knew I wanted a Gumballhead so I didn't do a lot of looking through the selection but they appeared to have a good mix of American and European beers.

V-we had 3 beers total for a price of $16. Not too bad but not somewhere to go if you plan on drinking a lot as it could get a bit pricey.

O- I will be returning to MacNivens on my next trip to Indy. I hope to try some of their food and maybe a few more beers. Very nice place overall.

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Photo of IronCitySteve
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

A: Walking in, there is a large bar area with ample seating. There are some tables in a separate area for dining. The bar is a little tight and could be tough to navigate if it got crowded. Nice exposed brick gives it a nice scottish feel.

Q: The beers appear to turnover quickly but each new brew on tap tastes nice and fresh.

Ser: The bartenders were prompt, efficient and knowlegable about the brews. The one bartender was explaing the 'hand pump' to another customer.

Sel: The tap selection is not overwhelming, but it covers a good amount of styles. They also have a decent amount of bottles. On tap they Founders, Brooklyn, Three Floyds, Bellhaven and Sun King. They also had a brew on the hand pump.

O: This is a solid choice if in Indy. You will get a good flavor of 'local' Indiana brews on tap in a nice setting at reasonable prices.

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Photo of mdbailey00
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Macniven's is a nice place to go for a wide beer selection and some pretty delicious. It can get pretty loud and stuffy on weekends, but what downtown bar doesn't? Their prices are reasonable. My only complaint is that there is smoking allowed in the bar area, which is connected to the other half of the restaurant without much separation. If you go to Macniven's you absolutely HAVE to try the scotch eggs. Service has always been good when I've been there. All in all, this place is a great place for BAs to go for tasty beverages and food.

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Photo of DONA812
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4

My friend, a fellow Ba, and I hit this place up a couple days ago and though it wasn't my first time going to Macniven's, it was the first time I have went since I became re-obsessed with beer.

The night we went they had some amazing stuff on tap. Sunking Grapefruit Jungle (an excellent beer by one of our best local breweries by the by), A quadrupel (sp?) that I cannot remember the name of but it was authentic Trappist stuff, The DFH/FFF Poppa Skull, as well as some other great local stuff. They also had a great bottle selection, including some DFH which is rare since they pulled out of our area a while back.

The bartender was excellent and really helpful. He poured us both a Left Hand Milk Stout/Crooked Tree IPA black and tan as per our request (a great combo if you ever feel the urge). I wish I could remember the guy's name to give him a shout out..

You can smoke at the bar and, although I did not eat this go-round, I have always been pretty fond of their food. A great scottish style restaurant that also caters to Beer Lovers.

All in all, a great experience.

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Photo of CSQ1111
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

A great place for B.A.'s to visit while in Indy for business or pleasure.

A large bar greets you when you walk in or they have tables for dining in an adjacent room.

Flying solo, I ponyed up to the bar and was greeted with friendly hello and a larger than expected beer menu.

Only about 10-12 taps, but all were well thought out with an emphasis on Regional offerings.

On tap, they had FFF's Robert the Bruce & Blackheart, Sun King's A Few Hops More Double IPA, and Flat 12's Tangerine Porter just to name a few.

The coolers were filled with lots of different bottle options. As a previous reviewer mentioned, a FFF bomber of Blackheart was $12.99. Very reasonable!

The Fish n Chips were simply o.k. (maybe the more authenic English style is supposed to be softer rather than crispy), but the Scotch eggs were outstanding.

Overall, I had a great visit and would highly recommend anyone visit while in Indy.

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MacNiven's Restaurant & Bar in Indianapolis, IN
Place rating: 4.19 out of 5 with 43 ratings