Cool Bookish Places

Cool Bookish Places: Books & Brews

Natalie Meyer

Staff Writer

Natalie Meyer quit her psychologist job to travel the world with her husband and a Kindle loaded with books. In her spare time, she can be found taking photos, reading, and writing about her , travel adventures.

IMG_2878Last week, I went on a road trip to Chicago. Well, I should say that I tried to go on a road trip to Chicago. In reality, the crazy cold and blowing snow turned us around before we could get a chance to freeze our toes off. Changing plans is always part of the adventure for me, though, so I wanted to make the best of the situation. Luckily, my husband knows I like checking out off-beat places and he likes new breweries. Enter his newest discovery: Books and Brews.

Books and Brews is a little brewery in Indianapolis, IN (in the parking lot of a Home Depot, no less). It is not just a brewery but a book-themed brewery. I don’t know how long I’ve been looking for a coffee-shop-like place where you can take a book, find a comfy chair, and read. Yes, I am an old person who wants to hear my friends and put my feet up. I don’t care! I think there’s a huge business to be had for someone who can come up with a funky but chill place where nerdy adults like me can hang out and read and drink.

Books and Brews is actually pretty cool. It comes in two parts. When you enter, they have a little book store where they sell donated books. Some of their proceeds go to Indy Reads, an organization that promotes literacy for adults. At the far end of the store, it opens up into a converted garage where they have a brewery and bar set up. They have food, beers, board games, and friendly waiters.

The best part of Books and Brews is that they have named all of their beers and food after famous books. I had The Merchant of V&T (Volume 2) which was a Cherry Chocolate Milk Stout, and it was delicious. Originally, I was going to have a Charlie and the Chocolate Stout but the waiter recommended I trade up to a different book (he was right). My husband had Nancy Brew and the Hoppy Boys. Some of the other options were Flowers for Ale-gernon, Cream and Punishment, and the Three Hopsketeers. Clever, clever.


I always get excited by places like this because it gives me a new topic of conversation when I’m bored. I’m one of those obnoxious people who amuse themselves with little games like that. Harry Porter. Taming of the Brew. Beer and Loathing in Las Vegas. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hops. My husband had the excellent suggestion of “The Malt in Our Stars,” which would be especially relevant for an Indiana brewery since the book took place in Indianapolis. Clearly, we have more work to do before we can open a similarly book-themed brewery. Books and Brew is welcome to any of our titles until then (if we can get free beers when we return, that is).

Why are there so few book-themed spots out there? Don’t people realize that, the more comfy I am and the longer I sit, the more beer I’m likely to buy? Or am I just delusional in thinking that there are others like me who would hang out at such a place? Has anyone else found a similar place where they live?


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