Writer / Pat Carlini
Photographer / Brian Brosmer
The LakeHouse at Geist (formerly known as Bella Vita at 11699 Fall Creek Road) is now open for business following a month of renovations and menu changes.
Now, the once Italian cuisine spot with a great lake view has a fresh new “lake house” look with a new menu to match.
“We are so excited for all the changes,” says General Manager Rachel Mills, who joined the restaurant team when new owners Jack Singh and his brother Shaan purchased the restaurant in 2014.
“At first it remained business as usual,” Rachel says. “But then we really listened to what our guests in the Geist community were saying, and we decided it was time to make some changes. We wanted a lighter, fresher look and menu.”
And that is just what they have done.
They LakeHouse at Geist has moved away from the Italian cuisine of Bella Vita and turned more toward great appetizers, steaks and seafood. They also want to offer dockside service to boaters.
“We want to cater more to the boaters on Geist,” Jack says. “It’s hard to manage fancy Italian cuisine on a boat. So, we thought, let’s offer good food that can easily be packed up to go.”
Chef Jay Mills is also excited to be part of the new LakeHouse at Geist. Born in Indianapolis, Mills is Rachel’s brother–in-law and heard about the new LakeHouse at Geist while working in the Carolinas.
“They told me all about what they were doing and I just thought this is an opportunity that I can’t pass up.”
Chef Mills says look for fresh salmon, lobster, salads and flatbreads, just to name a few items on the new menu. There’s also some fun appetizers such as the “Dockside bites” (fried potatoes) and “LakeHouse Lobster” (lightly breaded lobster pieces deep fried and tossed in a creamy, spicy sauce).
One of the popular appetizers since its opening February 1, has been the “beeftini” which is tender beef bites in a bistro sauce served in a martini glass. Mills says there’s also a couple of Indian inspired dishes he learned from the owners, too, including “Lamb lollipops” and Chicken Malai Tikka.
Outside will be a fun, upbeat venue with bands and acoustic music, full menu and a menu for the boaters to enjoy.
The new owners are removing the pool but adding a tiki bar with a man-made 40-foot long wooden bar in the shape of a boat.
“It’s still being built,” Shaan says. “But we hope to have it in by the time the warmer weather is here.”
Other changes include the casual, modern décor in shades of blue and grey. The waterfall walls of Bella Vita days are gone and new, steel hightop tables dot the dining area for an improved view of the water.
Live music will continue to be inside and outside this summer with a lot of the area favorites including Lemon Wheel, Andrew Young, The Bishops, and the Carl Storie Band, as well as newer bands like the Doo, and the Wayne Deaton Band.
The upstairs will still be available for private parties and other parts of the property as they plan to offer catering service for a variety of events from baby showers to wedding rehearsal dinners and work events.
The LakeHouse at Geist is open for dinner and Sunday brunch. They plan to add lunch during the warmer months and with the new and improved brunch menu and buffet, they will be opening for brunch Saturday mornings, too.
So, stop in and check out the new LakeHouse at Geist. It’s the same great spot on the water, just a whole new experience to enjoy!
For more information, go to LakeHouseatGeist.com or give them a call at 317-598-9011.