Vino at the Greenwood Villa

A long line of beautiful houses is arranged neatly on Madison Avenue near Greenwood’s downtown area. The houses, brick, multiple story, with big yards, are almost all converted into small businesses. One of these is Vino Villa, a wine bar that serves dozens of glasses and bottles while also cooking up magnificent pizzas, sandwiches and desserts.

Vino Villa greenwoodThe Villa is a beautiful, rustic wine cellar where anyone can go to get one of dozens of different wines. The wines are not marked up, so prices on many good wines are cheaper than anywhere else. Inside, the walls are covered in bottles and a counter holds different cheeses and desserts, including raspberry and lemon cheesecakes. The upstairs is a dining area, where you can choose to eat in winter. For summer, though, I suggest eating outside on the patio.

I went on a sunny Saturday afternoon and went immediately to the patio, which is surrounded by bushes, brick and comfortable seats. The staff is eager to talk about wine as long as you’ll let them. I ordered a Riesling that turned out to be not too sweet and not to dry, wonderfully refreshing for a sunny afternoon outside.

The menu at Vino Villa is small, but what they do they do well. Pizzas, sandwiches and antipasto make up most of the menu, with a few specials every day as well.

I had one of the specials, a crab and shrimp pizza with cream sauce, cheese and chives. A friend ordered pepperoni, which came with cheese and fresh tomato sauce. Because we are both from the Chicago area, ordering pizza is always an event rather than just a simple order. Whether or not the pie is good can become a passionate debate. But in this case, we both agreed: this was the best we’ve had so far in Indiana. Another positive thing about the pizza was that the leftovers made for another great meal the next day.

I love being able to enjoy a long afternoon eating and having a glass of wine outside, and Vino Villa is probably the best place I have found in Indianapolis to do this so far. The casual atmosphere wasn’t overly fancy or intimidating, and invited everyone to lean back and enjoy. The prices were reasonable and the staff was friendly, the perfect climate for a lazy weekend outing with good food and good wine.

Pizza at Vino Villa in GreenwoodVino Villa is located at 200 N. Madison Ave., and is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday and 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday.