Neal Brown almost entered a career in pharmaceutical sales. That never happened. And if you’ve ever tasted Neal’s cooking, you know that we should all be thankful he found his second calling. Now owner of two local restaurants, The Libertine and Pizzology Pizzeria & Pub, Neal has changed the food scene in Indy.
Doing Indy had the opportunity to sit down with Neal last week and find out how he puts his own twist on the holidays. Here’s what he had to say:
Doing Indy: What is your favorite thing to cook during the holidays?
Neal: If my family comes up from Florida, I always do a big prime rib. I do a bone-in, big, huge, enormous prime rib. Slow roast that thing all day about 250 degrees. It takes 4, 5, 6 hours to cook. And that is easily one of my favorite things to cook. It’s just so decadent. It’s just like drinking a bottle of Dom Pérignon. You don’t get to it very often, so when you do it, it feels special.
Doing Indy: Where do your restaurants source their ingredients from?
Neal: No matter what type of restaurant we own, we source everything as close to Indianapolis as possible. And then as an extension of that, we try to make everything as in-house as we can. For instance at Pizzology, instead of just buying mozzarella cheese, we buy cheese curds and then we make every single bit of mozzarella in-house.
Doing Indy: What’s your favorite holiday cocktail?
Neal: My favorite holiday cocktail is called a Brandy Scaffa. It has Brandy, Rum, Chartreuse and a little bit of armagnac.
Doing Indy: What is your favorite thing to do with your family in Indy during the holidays?
Neal: Carriage rides are just fantastic. It’s sort of a right of passage for winter. You have to take a carriage ride. I don’t know – there’s something really special about Christmas in Indianapolis. It’s hard to put your finger on it. There’s an energy downtown that is very different, but it’s a pretty special place.
Try a Brandy Scaffa in person! Located just around the corner from Monument Circle, The Libertine is the perfect place to enjoy a cocktail before heading to any of Indy’s holiday shows. Plus, now through January 6, Hoosier residents can stay at 20 of our top hotels at rates up to 50 percent off. Just make sure to book your room 72 hours in advance of the date of stay and have an Indiana ID handy at check-in. This Hoosier Holidays offer is good for anyone who calls Indiana home.