One of my favorite things in the whole wide world is a chocolate shake. And one of the best chocolate shakes I have EVER HAD IN MY LIFE was at Traders Point Creamery on the northern outskirts of Indianapolis.
Wherever you live, it’s worth the drive. For us, we were on a day-trip to Indianapolis primarily to visit the zoo. A friend raved about their fresh yogurt and I was curious. I figured it was worth a quick stop on the way out of town. Traders Point is a grass-fed, family-run dairy operation that features a farm-to-table restaurant in the barn’s loft. Sounds cool, right? And there were cows. What kid does not like an up-and-close-look at a real-live cow? My husband, whose grandparents were dairy farmers, was on board.
We arrived at the farm later in the day. It was not milking time, but still we were allowed to tour the milking parlor and a nice dairyman explained the setup and process to us. We walked through the parlor, but if you prefer, you can view it from a picture window. Outside, the Brown Swiss cows lounged in the green grass, glancing occasionally at us. (These are pastured moo-cows. No CAFO in sight.) My four-year-old adored watching the little kittens running around the barnyard and lapping up the fresh milk set out for them in bowls. Chickens also milled about.
We were too pooped from walking around the zoo and didn’t venture on the hiking trail that winds around the farm and down along a creek. (Next time.) Plus, I was ready for my milkshake. After our tour, we climbed the stairs to the Loft, where you’ll find a rustic dining area and dairy bar. We read through the menu and it did take me long to make a decision: chocolate shake, please!
It was sooooo rich, sooooo thick, sooo yummarrific! My only mistake was thinking I would be fine sharing one with my husband.
The Loft serves farm-to-table lunches and dinners. (And a Mother’s Day brunch, with music, is coming up on May 13.) Lunch meals for kids are simple (quesadillas, beef hot dogs) and lunch for adults include items like the cheese plate, beet salad, patty melts and chicken and mac-and-cheese casserole. If you’re traveling with children, I’d recommend enjoying lunch with them at the Loft and leave the evening, candlelit meals to the adults.
At the little shop, I stocked up on yogurt, milk and some aged cheese. They sell non-homogenized milk here, which means it’s creamy and you will need to shake the bottle before drinking it. (On the bright side, non-homogenized milk works great if you’re making homemade butter with the kids.) Next time we visit Traders Point (a 1.5-hour drive from our house), I will bring a cooler in an attempt to transport some ice cream back home.
Whether you’re in Indy visiting the awesome children’s museum, extensive zoo, prairie or what have you, make a point to carve out some time (at least 30 minutes, but we spent at least an hour, 1.5 hours) there.
Self-guided tours are available daily from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. for $2 a person. In addition to the milking parlor, you can head to the hiking trail that takes you around the grounds and along a creek.
Milking happens at 4 p.m. daily.
You can find Traders Point at 9101 Moore Road, Zionsville, Indiana.
More info, including restaurant and dairy bar hours and such is on their website: www.tpforganics.com.