One of the questions we hear from clients who visit Lieberman Technologies from outside the Evansville area is, “Where’s a good place to eat?” It’s a reasonable question, considering the many choices available to locals and visitors alike. After all, if you’ve got a limited amount of time to spend in a city, you want to make your meal choices count.
Evansvillians spend a lot of time talking about food. Whether we’re recommending one of the many eateries on the East Side, enjoying lunch on the downtown Walkway, or planning which food booths to visit at the annual West Side Nut Club Fall Festival, we love to talk about food here.
So, in the interest of answering this eternal and very important question, we conducted a decidedly unscientific poll of the LT crew to get their opinions on the best places to eat in Evansville. If you’re looking for a nice evening out, a family-friendly meal, or something a little different to try, our poll has a little something for everyone.
Best Date Night Restaurant
Café Arazu – Many sang the praises of this Mediterranean-inspired café located in Newburgh, but LT Software Engineer Tom Ballard said it best: “If the weather is nice, sit outside on the terrace and enjoy a drink while the sun sets. Inside, the atmosphere is wonderful. Their salads and sandwiches are great, as are the chicken and spinach artichoke wraps. The mustard-crusted salmon is excellent. Go for a walk along the Ohio after. Then get ice-cream from Ben and Penny’s which is owned and run by the owners of Arazu and is adjacent to it.”
Old Chicago – Date night doesn’t always mean dressed-up. Soon-to-be-married Project Manager Kayleigh Kuster weighed in with her opinion: “We always end up at Old Chicago. Their deep dish pizza is awesome. The double deckeroni is where it’s at.”
Cork and Cleaver – As an established Evansville dining tradition, “the Cork” got several mentions across the board. The Accounting Department’s Arlene Helming said it best: “The fresh and generous salad bar and delicious entrees prepared and delivered by a well-trained, friendly staff make Cork and Cleaver an awesome restaurant. However, the low lighting and seclusion of the tables via the restaurant’s decor provides a romantic atmosphere. This setting coupled with the perfectly timed delivery of each course makes Cork and Cleaver my choice for the best date night restaurant.“
The Red Geranium – If you want cozy and quiet, says LT’s own Phil Lieberman: “Well, it would probably be The Red Geranium in New Harmony. That’s because it’s an out of the way place and is a pleasant drive. And if you can sit in the Tillich room, you get a great view with little noise and no close tables. “
Best Family Dining
Hilltop Inn – Web developer and West-sider Dan Sullivan says: “I’ve gone to this place with my family since I was a child and I’ve never once left hungry. The brain sandwiches my parents ate used to gross me out until I tried it with plenty of pickle, onion, and mustard. I have been a fan ever since. It’s definitely my go-to choice after a long vacation when I want to get back to my roots.”
Turonis – With three locations, Turnoni’s Pizzery and Brewery is a great choice for family dining no matter which side of town you’re on. Managing Partner Stewart Klipsch sums it up best: “Salad for Mom, pizza for the kids, and beer for Dad.”
Best for a Fun Meal With Friends
Gerst House – Count on Dan Sullivan to sing the praises of a West Side eatery: “I’m not sure if it’s the huge beer selection, the ice-cold fishbowls of draft Gerst, or the delicious kraut balls, but the Gerst House is always a solid choice for a fun night with a group of friends.”
Talk of the Town Pizza – Pizza is a go-to meal for a lot of different occasions, but for Director of Development Pat Heck, Talk of the Town has “great pizza, great atmosphere, and is very laid back.”
Hacienda – If you’ve got a big, noisy group, Hacienda gets Arlene Helming’s vote: “Margaritas with chips and salsa and lots of gabbing and laughing. Then more margaritas and some form of meat, beans, cheese, lettuce and tomato and more gabbing and laughing. By now everyone is really loud and who cares? No one. Because the place is always loud.”
Best for a Business Lunch
Angelo’s – As one of the most popular venues on the Main Street walkway, Angelo’s offers pizza, pasta, and salad at reasonable prices. The cafeteria style of the restaurant during the lunch hour is good for business meetings, says Dan Sullivan: “It eliminates any awkward wait for the bill and the fully furnished style of their dining area makes it easy to have a business conversation without any trouble hearing each other.”
Ri Ra’s – No one wants to wait to be seated at lunchtime, particularly if you have business to attend to during that time of day. Phil Lieberman likes Ri-Ra’s Irish-style pub: “It’s close to the office and it’s generally not crowded.”
Also mentioned: Cork and Cleaver, Turoni’s Weinbach, Salad World, Biaggi’s, Gerst Haus
Best Ethnic Food
Charlie’s Mongolian BBQ – Ethnic food can be intimidating, but Charlie’s makes it easy by allowing you to select the ingredients that go into your meal. Says Kayleigh Kuster: “It’s fresh and you get to pick exactly what is in your dish, very customizable. They just added egg rolls to their menu and they are awesome! Also, it’s pretty cheap.”
Thai Papaya – The always-adventurous Tom Ballard enjoys the Thai cuisine here: “It may be the only Thai restaurant in Evansville. If you like Thai, this is the place. The Chicken Coconut soup is great. My favorite is Panang Curry, a spicy creamy curry made with coconut milk. Ingredients are very fresh.”
Best Value for the Money
Spankey’s Una Pizza – There are plenty of pizza joints to satisfy every preference for pizza in Evansville. Dan Sullivan’s money is on Spankey’s: “This place may not be extraordinarily cheap, but I fully believe they have the best pizza on the face of the Earth because they make sure to use top-quality ingredients. I typically purchase a 12-inch Westsider and it’s good for about 3 meals. You can’t beat under $5 a meal for one of the best things the world has to offer!”
Subway – If you’re looking to grab a quick meal on the cheap, says Stewart Klipsch, you can’t beat Subway: “It’s a good option for a $5 meal.”
El Charro – A great choice for Mexican cuisine, says Digital Marketing Architect Zac Parsons: “It’s hard to beat a generous meal, tax and drink included, for $7.00.”
There you have it: The unofficial Lieberman Technologies poll of the best places to eat in and around Evansville. Of course, there are plenty more eateries out there that didn’t make the list.
What’s your favorite, and why?