At the end of August, the Indianapolis Star finished sifting through the 100,000 votes that had been submitted for its annual "Best Things" list that attempts to determine, you know, the Best Things in and around the city. Its Best Things to Food and Drink category, for example, named the best (and second best) restaurants, bars, bakeries, food truck, and liquor store, among others.
When it came to the best barbecue restaurant, the winning joint was actually 20-plus miles outside of Indianapolis, but hey, good barbecue is good barbecue. Rusted Silo Southern BBQ and Brew House just opened about 18 months ago, but it's already collected a loyal fan base, a lot of five-star Yelp reviews, and two consecutive Best Things awards.
That restaurant is also promising free barbecue for life to anyone who can help the owner catch the jerkwad (or jerkwads) who broke into the restaurant in the early hours of last Saturday morning. "We were robbed, but we were burgled first," Rusted Silo owner Rob Ecker told WTHR.
The as-yet-unidentified suspects tried to bash the restaurant's back door open, but when that didn't work, they pried the front door open. Once they made it inside, they broke the antique cash register that the restaurant still used, stole an unspecified amount of cash, and ran off. (They also unscrewed the overhead light bulbs, so they couldn't be seen—so it sounds like this prooobably wasn't their first break-in.)
"It appears that the thieves used a small battery operated saw to cut through the door frame and then used a crowbar to pry open the frame to free the deadbolt," Ecker told VICE. "Once inside, the crooks broke into our almost century-old NCR cash register and stole the contents. When the thieves left, they left behind their new crowbar and a glove, both of which have been sent off to the Indiana State Police lab for testing."
Ecker had a think about the situation, and then decided to put up a meat-based reward for any information that led to their capture. "Snitching never tasted so good," he printed on the bottom of the hundreds of actual wanted posters that he had printed to hand out at the restaurant.
Although Ecker is serious about that "free barbecue for life" thing, even the wanted poster comes with an asterisk mentioning that "Terms and Conditions Do Apply." (He told VICE it means that whoever collects this reward will have to redeem it in $25-per-week increments—but with the restaurant's current prices, that still means they could score a pound of brisket or a rack of ribs every week).
As of this writing, the Hendricks County Sheriff’s Office has received one tip which Ecker says they are "vigorously following up on." Anyone who does have information about the robbery is encouraged to reach out to the police department (obvs) and to contact the Rusted Silo at 317-994-6145. Ecker has promised to keep any tips confidential—and there's a lot of good barbecue at stake here.