The Wait Is Over
Ale Emporium Fishers Celebrates Grand Opening
Writer: Josh Brown
Photographer: Brian Brosmer
The wait is over. Ale Emporium now has a second location serving up its world-famous wings.
Ale Emporium Fishers officially opened its doors March 1 to a packed crowd ready to devour wings. Fans of Ale Emporium’s Hermanaki-style wings rejoiced back in November when it was announced that the famous sports pub would be opening a Fishers/Geist location.
Co-owners Tony Kwiatkowski and Scott Baun are excited for patrons to enjoy the Indy favorite at the new north side location. Perhaps the biggest change for the new venue is the fact that it will now be family-friendly, compared to Ale Emporium Castleton’s 21 and over rule. Now located in a suburb, Kwiatkowski and Baun viewed the change as a no-brainer and one they hope will bring more community involvement.
“Since this is a family-friendly restaurant, the key for us is being a part of the community,” Kwiatkowski says. “This is our first attempt at being in a suburb, and we are really excited to be a part of the community. We will have fundraising opportunities in the future.”
The original Ale Emporium opened in March of 1982, and, while there have been thoughts of expanding in the past, Baun says they were not necessarily adamant about having to find a new location. When Casler’s Kitchen & Bar officially closed in November though, the pieces fell together for Ale Emporium to take over the spot located at 11501 Geist Pavilion Dr.
“The (Fonseca) family is great,” Baun says. “They absolutely did not foreclose. We actually have a good relationship with them. They are grandparents at this point, and I think they just wanted to spend time with their family. We just lucked into finding this place and, thankfully, it worked out.”
The look and feel of the new Fishers & Geist restaurant is similar to the original pub. And don’t worry, the menu is virtually the same — highlighting Ale Emporium’s famous hermanaki wings and pizza.
“We try to bring a lot of the original location’s atmosphere and tradition,” Kwiatkowski says. “Ale Emporium is a landmark of Indianapolis and one of the most popular restaurants in the city. We try to bring in, aesthetically, some ties of the original location. The menu will be the same, just slightly scaled back.
For those that frequented Casler’s when it was opened, they will notice some major changes when they walk into the new Ale Emporium location. The bar hasn’t been moved, but it has been updated with stone removed and brick added. The pub has all new floors, paint, lighting and a new 14-foot garage door that will be opened up during the summer time. The kitchen has also been updated with all new floors and equipment, including a double layer pizza oven.
Among the greatest changes, the fire pit, which could be seen in Casler’s when you walked in, has been removed to add space for to-go customers at the front of the restaurant.
“Aesthetically here, as people will see, we have done a lot with the place,” Kwiatkowski says. “We started off with a short list of things we thought we would do, but as we dove into this we decided to go ahead and renovate and update some things we thought we would be having to do down the road, too. Pretty much the whole place has been remodeled.”
The new spot also boasts 60 flat screen TVs and, as a centerpiece behind the bar, a majestic, 165-inch video wall made up of about 10 TVs combined into one. There is no doubt that the new sports pub will be a hotspot for fans looking to catch a game.
“I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the AV upgrade in here,” Kwiatkowski adds. “We have four different video walls that have the highest quality TVs and can all be combined to be one picture or break up into multiple pictures. The AV upgrade is amazing, and I think that will pop as soon as people walk in.”
Newcomer, Jo Lopez, brings a decade of experience in the restaurant business and will lead the new location as the general manager.
“I was with Buffalo Wild Wings for 10 years, five of those I spent as the general manager,” Lopez says. “I’ve also worked in the HR side of things, so I have dabbled in all aspects of the restaurant business. We have hired some great managers, and we will bring a great culture and staff that will only elevate what Ale Emporium has already done.”
“We are super excited to be (on the north side),” Baun adds. “It is crazy how much excitement there has been for this spot, I never would have expected that.”
Ale Emporium Fishers is located at 11501 Geist Pavilion Dr. Visit them online at aleemporiumfishers.com or give them a call at 317-288-7394.