The Knickerbocker Saloon: An Old School Bar in a New Town

The Knickerbocker Bar West Lafayette

As I sat at a heavy walnut bar surrounded by mirrors that illuminated the impressive liquor display, it was hard for me not to feel like a character out of a Fitzgerald novel. The Knickerbocker Saloon, located at 113 N. Fifth St. in downtown Lafayette, is Indiana’s oldest bar, with an equally impressive legacy. Though the Knickerbocker Saloon has hundreds of tiny details that are worth exploring, listed below are the five most notable.

A prohibition liquor plaque displayed at the Knickerbocker Saloon in Lafayette, Indiana

Calling my History Buffs

Receiving its liquor license in 1835, the Knickerbocker Saloon is the oldest bar in Indiana! Throughout the bar’s history, it has been visited by such notables as Neil Armstrong, Ulysses S. Grant and John Purdue. Featured on the walls by the bathroom are two plaques; one commemorating the Knickerbocker’s 175th anniversary in 2010, and the other displays a certificate for the prohibition of liquor in 1922!

A Zombie Dust beer at the Knickerbocker Saloon in Lafayette, Indiana.

99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall

Though they don’t serve 99 different types of beers, the general manager, Deborah Walstra, informed me that they carry 80 to 84 brands of beer at a given time, rotating with the seasons. Sorry to disappoint tap lovers, but they only carry bottled beers, which was a quirky surprise. I tried a Zombie Dust beer, which is a powerfully hopped pale ale that had a great, refreshing flavor and a unique package design. Walstra also mentioned that the Knickerbocker hosts a free beer school on the first and third Monday of every month, in which different breweries offer information and samplings of their products (no sign-up necessary). To support local businesses, the Knickerbocker also carries beer from local breweries in Lafayette, making sure everyone can sample the best that Indiana has to offer.

A caramel apple martini at the Knickerbocker Saloon in Lafayette, Indiana.

Martinis Galore

My interview at the Knickerbocker took place on a Wednesday, which just so happens to be martini night (coincidence- I think not). From the classic martini to an equally impressive “flirtini,” the Knickerbocker offers any type of martini you can dream of (and even some that would never cross your mind). I sampled a caramel apple martini, which was made with a smooth caramel vodka base and tasted like I was biting into an taffy apple: needless to say, I was in love. Walstra said that she encourages her staff to experiment with different martini flavors, creating a new concoction almost every night (truly an impressive feat).

Entertainment room at the Knickerbocker Saloon in Lafayette, Indiana.

Not the Taj Mahal, but….

With a history dating from 1835, the Knickerbocker was bound to have some awesome architectural features. What struck me first was the beautiful bar. Constructed from walnut with a cherry veneer, it exudes a 1920s feel. I also loved the high, tin ceilings, which added to the “old money” ambiance. Because of the stunning architectural features, the Knickerbocker hosts many business and wedding receptions.

Live entertainment offered at the Knickerbocker Saloon.

Live Entertainment

Perhaps the most attractive feature of the Knickerbocker Saloon is the live entertainment. On Monday the bar features karaoke. Every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, live piano music entertains. Every Friday a unique artist is featured from People’s Live (a local brewery that supports regional musicians), and on Saturday live music is offered! In the extended green room, a stage is set up to make accommodating artists and large groups a breeze.

Open every day from 4 p.m. to 3 a.m., the Knickerbocker is sure to dazzle you with its impressive history and diverse drink menu. For more information about the bar visit its Facebook or call (765) 423-2234. For more information about local bars in Lafayette/West Lafayette be sure to check out the Home of Purdue Blog.

Sarah Staatz, Purdue University Student, shares this blog.

Weekend Update: Nutcracker & Pickin’ Pear

Lafayette-West Lafayette Weekend Update! Looking for a fun Indiana weekend getaway? Or do you live in this area and are looking for entertainment close by? Check out the endless possibilities for fun events happening this upcoming weekend in or near Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana.

Since 1990, Lafayette Ballet Company has been performing the full-length NUTCRACKER in early January at Long Center. For 2019 the company presents their complete ballet on Jan. 5 at 2 PM and 7:30 PM, and on Jan. 6 at 2 PM. The sumptuous Tchaikovsky music, the brilliant costumes and sets, the energetic dancing of 40 dancers, and the classic story of a young girl’s dreams are a treat for all ages. Tickets go on sale December 3, 2018 at Lafayette Ballet – 628 Main Street, 47901.

More entertainment is happening Jan. 4 at 9 PM. People’s Live presents: Pickin’ Pear with Naomi Rae at the Knickerbocker Saloon. Tia Martini and Leon Elam – The Pickin’ Pear – branch out from Canyon Collected to create a folk ‘n’ roll duo. They combine their non-traditional stylings to their traditional instruments and create an original mix of modern American music. Together the Pickin’ Pear take the banjo and ukulele down the road of folk, rock, and bluegrass. Sometimes the ukulele will even launch you straight to outer space. A blend of top-notch songwriting and improvisational jamming makes each one of their songs sound unique.

For more information about these events and other events happening this weekend in Lafayette-West Lafayette, check out our website at HomeOfPurdue.com.

Ring in the New Year 2018-19

Get ready to celebrate this coming new year!  Do you live in this area and are looking for entertainment close by? Check out the plethora of fun, holiday events happening this New Year’s and New Year’s Eve in or near Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana.

  • Enjoy amazing deals at Arrowhead Bowl – choose the Family Celebration or Adult Celebration packages for an awesome New Year’s experience for everyone! The Family Celebration alone includes 2 hours of unlimited cosmic bowling (with a DJ), free shoe rental, bumpers, 2 pizzas, 2 orders of breadsticks, unlimited soft drinks, party favors, and more!
  • If you are looking for a great way to bring in the New Year’s holiday, you can find something fun for everyone at one of Faith Christian Community Center’s three locations that are hosting celebrations! Bingo, raffles, swimming, movies, laser tag, bounce houses, food, games… there’s something for everyone!
  • Welcome to Teays River‘s first annual New Year’s Eve party! Make sure to get your tickets before December 31st so you don’t miss out on all of the excitement! Tickets include open hors d’ oeuvre buffet all night, four drink tickets for beer & wine, and champagne at midnight! This will include a raffle ticket for some amazing prizes. Also, door prizes, music, DJ, and a complimentary coat check.
  • Music lovers must check out the New Year’s performance at the Delphi Opera House. The band The Time Travelers performs December 31st! Their great singing voices and musicianship allow them to cover a tremendous variety of classic rock songs from the early days to the present. It’s hard to stay in your seats with this group, so there will be a dance floor!
  • For a healthy start to the year, you can participate in the Wabash River Runners Club’s Run in the New Year event! January 1st at 9AM, the WRRC hosts a FUN RUN to bring in the new year.  This is an event to bring the group together and is open to anyone who wishes to participate! You can register to run here.
  • Celebrate the beauty of Prophetstown State Park on January 1st, with the First DayHike. Meet at The Visitor’s Center for a cool afternoon hike through the prairie and tour of the Native American Village. End the hike by warming up by the fire and drinking cocoa and cider in the council house.
  • Put a TWIST on your New Year’s celebrations with Painting with a Twist and Rat Pak Mobile DJs! Begin the night painting a masterpiece with step-by-step instruction, fun, and games provided by the entertaining artists from PWAT-Lafayette! Ring in the New Year while you sing, dance, and enjoy the live music by DJ SUNN! Enjoy wine, champagne specials, and complimentary appetizers! This is no ordinary art class! 18 and up, 21+ to drink!
  • Enjoy an intimate dinner set by Deux’ Amis followed by Ebony Barrett and the Rukus and DJ Friday Austin to ring in the New Year at the Nami’s Bar & Grill New Year’s Eve Celebration!! They will have dinner specials as well as featured drinks and a champagne toast at midnight.

For more information about these events and other great activities in our area, visit HomeOfPurdue.com.

Winter Wonderland Contest 2018 Winner

We have the winner of our “Winter Wonderland Contest 2018″ worth over $500! Congratulations to Michelle from Indianapolis, Indiana.

She shares, “I am just very happy and excited! I will take lots of photos and share!”

Thanks to all who participated in this latest contest! Stay tuned for our next big contest/package we will be hosting in January!

Nami’s Bar & Grill Exemplifies Great Flavors

Happening Now!  Planning a stay in Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana, area? Whether you are looking for delicious dining, interesting attractions and shops, enticing events or home away from home lodging—a getaway to Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana, is sure to satisfy. Right now the talk around town is about one fabulous, new restaurant, Nami’s Bar & Grill, that just opened in the heart of our downtown. Serving American fare and also “pop up” sushi during lunch hours, this new dining experience is sure to satisfy! Nami’s also offers handcrafted classic and original cocktails and select craft beers!

Our staff loves to try out new restaurants and we were so excited to explore the flavors and enjoy the ambiance of Nami’s. When we arrived, we were greeted by a friendly hostess who led us to our table that overlooked our lovely courthouse. We had the perfect seats in the house to enjoy the outdoor beauty as well as the beautiful bar in the center of the restaurant. The tall ceilings and artwork along the walls create a comfortable and warm place to visit.

Now onto the food, (the best part!). I ordered the chicken sandwich with French fries and their special soup of the day, loaded potato soup. The soup was amazing! It had cut up red potatoes perfectly cooked within it as well as tons of bacon and cheese. It was one of the best potato soups I have ever eaten. My chicken sandwich was also amazing! Truthfully, I get nervous ordering chicken as so many times it is dry. This sandwich was the opposite of dry as the chicken was so juicy and flavorful. I added sharp cheddar cheese which added fabulous flavor as well. I can be picky with my bun, and it was fresh and light. The fries were large hand-cut potatoes sprinkled with salt and very tasty as well. I don’t think I have had a fry quite like it and it was great. I recommend their homemade ranch dressing to dip the fries or really anything in.  FABULOUS!!!

Lisa, our Vice-President shares, “I love a good burger and was not disappointed by the Reserve Burger at Nami’s.  This beef burger was yummy and cooked perfectly to my taste. I chose the house made fries over the house chips. The fries were thick potatoes wedges with a mild seasoning and were amazing. I love a good martini and am looking forward to going back to try a martini when off the office clock! They are doing $6 martini nights on Thursdays.”

“The Asian Salad was presented so beautifully! It was a very large salad, I couldn’t eat it all,” shares Ashley, VLWL Director of Sales. “Good mix of flavors and textures from crispy cabbage, creamy avocado, sweet mandarin oranges, crispy noodles, sesame seeds and grilled shrimp. The soy ginger dressing was excellent, with a bit of a kick. It was a bit spicy for me with my mouth burning for a bit when done, but I still really enjoyed it. I’d recommend getting the dressing on the side though, so you can use as much or as little as you like.”

We are all excited to head back to Nami’s and take our spouses out to dinner. Their dinner menu includes filet, crab cakes, lobster tail, pastas and more. If their dinner is even half as good as their lunch, it will be a wonderful dining experience!

Make sure to add Nami’s Bar & Grill to your next dining out adventure. You will be delighted!!

Oh and did we mention they have fabulous desserts?! Caramel salted cheesecake!

For more information about this restaurant and others in Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana, check out our website at HomeOfPurdue.com.

Weekend Update: Scott Greeson & Friends Christmas and Christmas at Linden Depot

Lafayette-West Lafayette Weekend Update! Looking for a fun Indiana weekend getaway? Or do you live in this area and are looking for entertainment close by? Check out the endless possibilities for fun events happening this upcoming weekend in or near Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana.

Come out to Battle Ground, Indiana, this Saturday morning before Christmas to enjoy breakfast and music! Scott Greeson and friends will be playing Christmas music from 9:30 to 11:30 am at the Eye Opener Cafe​. Savor a delicious breakfast of biscuits and gravy, hash browns, eggs and more while you get into the holiday spirit with Scott’s holiday music.

This Friday, Saturday and Sunday, explore trains at the Christmas 2018 Linden Depot Museum event. This weekend the museum is featuring the 1837 Nooris 4-2-0 steam engine being built for the 25th anniversary. Shop for the perfect holiday train gift at the museum as well as purchasing a Linden Depot Museum ornament with a donation of $10 or more.

For more information about these events and other events happening this weekend in Lafayette-West Lafayette, check out our website at HomeOfPurdue.com.

Winter Wonderland Contest Details 2018

It’s our first ever Winter Wonderland Contest to Home of Purdue! This contest is worth over $550! Here are some special details about the local places who have donated:

  • Just minutes from Purdue, enjoy a great night’s rest at Hilton Garden Inn – West Lafayette. Swim, exercise and rest all at this fabulous hotel!
  • Have you heard the saying “Meet you at Arni’s!” Have you heard this saying before? It is something that can be heard at least once a week at Director of Communications, Sara’s home, where she and her family enjoy thin crust pizza, Arni’s salads, garlic bread and more!
  • Indiana’s Oldest Drive-In: Since 1929, West Lafayette’s Triple XXX (named for the house brand of root beer) has been serving up the best old-fashioned burgers and fries around. Featured on Food Network’s series Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, hosted by Guy Fieri.
  • If you live in a house divided, with some people looking for worldly eats and others insisting on American fare, this is the place for you. Where? Parthenon Greek American Grill serving both Greek and American eats!
  • If you’re looking for a twist on your typical comfort food, try Digby’s BBQ Pulled Pork Mac. Mac and cheese and pulled pork seems like it could be a strange combination, but it’s amazing!
  • Delectable cupcakes await at Gigi’s Cupcakes! Scarlett’s Red Velvet, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Miss Princess, Cotton Candy, Wedding Cake, and Kentucky Bourbon Pie are just a few of our favorites.
  • To experience “Midwest Hospitality” at its finest, visit Mike Aulby’s Arrowhead Bowl, where you can find great bowling and family fun in a smoke free environment!
  • Tour the building that was once featured at the St. Louis Worlds Fair, Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art! It holds some of the most historic and valued Indiana art pieces in the state!
  • Lafayette Symphony Orchestra: Be swept way on a musical adventure when you attend a lovely performance by this local group of musicians.
  • Test your mini golf skills at Monster Mini Golf: 18-holes of surprises, twists, and turns! What’s the catch? It’s all in the dark with neon monsters around every corner!
  • Imagine a place covered in ice and surrounded by trees glistening with a light layer of frost. Come and skate at Riverside Skating Center this winter and embrace the season!
  • With songs by pop icon Cyndi Lauper, Kinky Boots is the six-time Tony Award-winning Broadway musical with high heels and a huge heart. Do not miss this awesome performance on January 17, 2019, at Purdue Convocations.
  • You have 60 minutes. Can you breakout? Mission: Breakout is an escape game brought to life. Players are “locked” in a themed room and must work together with other players to solve clues, to work on puzzles, and to find the key to breakout before time runs out! Think you’ve got what it takes?
  • If you want to throw a party for you and your loved ones, have a specific painting you’d like to do, or just want some privacy, Painting with a Twist has a party room specially for these occasions!

Enter to win this fabulous contest at HomeOfPurdueBlog.com. Good luck!

Holiday Weekend Update Dec. 14-16, 2018

Holiday Weekend Update! Looking for a fun Indiana weekend getaway? Or do you live in this area and are looking for entertainment close by? Check out the plethora of fun, holiday events happening this upcoming weekend in or near Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana.

  • Holiday Tours at the Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art is a special treat that you won’t soon forget. (December 12-16) A Christmas train traveling through several rooms, decorated with Dickens Villages is a favorite feature for both kids and adults.  A gingerbread-style playhouse and multiple animated figures invite kids to participate. Decorated trees, Santas, angels, nativities, Lafayette houses and Dickens villages fill the Museum and spread the Christmas spirit.

    Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art

  • Enjoy a candy cane tour at McCord Candies!  Make your very own candy cane on December 14, 15 & 16.
  • 14 life-size outdoor scenes involving a cast of hundreds bring to life the significance of the baby in the manger at Faith Church.  The “Living Nativity” will take place on December 14, 15 & 16. You can either walk or drive through the nativity.
  • The Civic Theatre of Greater Lafayette brings you “A Christmas Carol” on December 14, 15 & 16. This version of John Jakes’ nationally successful stage adaptation not only tells the Dickens story faithfully but also allows young audiences to enjoy the real magic of theater; watching the actors create the scene and costume change as the show moves along. Charles Dickens is introduced at the beginning, starts to tell the story of Scrooge’s redemption, then brings it alive with the help of the others in the cast!
  • Grab some popcorn and snuggle in the Lafayette Symphony Orchestra presents a special movie edition of Holiday Pops with seasonal classics and songs from your favorite holiday films on December 15.
  • Every year, Santa stops by Wolf Park to deliver treats to all the good little canines at the Park. Join the fun on December 15 and help decorate a tree with edible ornaments for the wolves. Then, join everyone in the conference center to enjoy drinks and crafts, and to tell Santa what you want for Christmas.

    Timber at Wolf Park

  • Donuts with Santa is taking place at the McAllister Recreation Center on December 15. Join Santa and his helpers for breakfast, holiday crafts and games. Write a letter to Santa and grab a picture with him before he heads back to the North Pole!
  • The Lafayette Master Chorale presents its Holidays Concerts on December 16. Lessons & Carols concert at 4pm: Experience the beauty of word and song with the time-honored traditional service of Nine Lessons and Carols in the beautiful, candlelit First Baptist Church. Join all of our choruses for favorite carols with organ, brass quintet and timpani as our community celebrates all the joy the holiday season has to offer. Holiday Fanfares concert at 7:30pm: From the introductory notes of familiar Christmas carols to the vibrant fanfares in John Rutter’s Gloria, you will be energized by the brass octet and Master Chorale in an evening filled with both exuberance and beauty. New and familiar holiday selections will leave you full of joy and wonder.

Selfie at McCord Candies!

For more information about these events and other special “happenings” in Lafayette-West Lafayette, check out our website at www.HomeOfPurdue.com.