Local Grind is where the neighbourhood inspires the menu, the coffee and the service.
Located on the ground floor of the Watson Hotel in Walkerville, the Local Grind really is where the locals meet. It’s probable the staff will know the names of their kids, and their dogs. They will certainly know their coffee preferences.
“We’ve settled into the community here,” says owner/chef Adam Rocco. And while there’s serious coffee experience behind the counter, including barista Josh Willis’ stint at Melbourne’s Proud Mary, the focus is on keeping it fresh and fun for everyone.
“You can’t just keep doing the same thing all the time,” explains Adam. “We love trying out new roasteries, and we only buy in small batches, and then we see what our customers like. We’re always looking for complexity and subtlety in the coffee we choose, and making it interesting for our customers. It’s the same sort of tasting and educating process as with wine – there’s always something new to try.”
The same is true of the menu. Lately it has veered towards lighter, healthier options – again, in tune with that local demand. There are some raw ingredients – maybe fresh apple and radishes adding zing to a grilled Hay Valley lamb, or the bite of radicchio and tangy citrus paired with quinoa and house-cured salmon. But there’s no proselytising for any particular food fad going on, it’s just the kitchen crew having fun with flavour and produce at its peak. “We buy the best we can, and do the best we can. There’s no need to complicate a good product,” says Adam simply.
Local Grind has now expanded into catering and functions, and since there’s a hotel overhead, regular guests have had their input as well. “Now that we have a licence, the hotel guests have helped us develop our range,” says Adam. “We’ve tried to include the familiar names and random fun stuff, including craft beers and smaller labels. We want to encourage guests in Adelaide to taste and then head out to the regions to see the vineyards and learn more about our great wines.”
Unusually for any city coffee scene, Local Grind is a quiet oasis, o the main thoroughfare and right alongside a section of Adelaide’s serene parkland. The local pups are welcome and while there’s a great energy, there’s no hectic din.
Adam kicks off his day with an espresso while he gets the house made pastries in the oven. Josh might brew himself a Brazilian origin flat white later in the day. But that’s not important. What’s important at Local Grind is what sort of coffee you’d like.
Breakfast and Lunch Mon to Sun 7:00am – 4:00pm