Izabel “Izzy” Czechowicz and Fraser Monfries met more than 10 years ago while working at a cinema in Norwood. Little did they know that a decade down the track, they’d open a cafe together right across the road.
Rodeo deftly combines the pair’s hospitality experience – Izzy’s in food, Fraser’s in coffee – and their personalities. “I think Rodeo comes from us both being pretty free-spirited individuals, young in the hospo game and taking the bull by the horns,” Monfries tells Broadsheet.
Rodeo is a compact and inviting package, with its hot pink and orange mural; art-filled feature wall; pickle-shaped lights by glassblower Liam Fleming; and bubbly signage. The decor is by Adelaide graphic designer and illustrator Mia Umeko, who painted the mural on the back wall among other artworks. Cactus, horse and desert details nod to the cowboy-core trend. While there are a dozen seats inside and out, Rodeo is mostly grab-and-go – but you’ll want to stick around for a chat with the staff.
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The sandwiches are very much the hero here, according to Monfries. Think contemporary spins on classics combos, riffing on Czechowicz’s creativity in the kitchen, as well as his preference for local ingredients and making elements from scratch. There are six options on the menu – four toasted, two fresh – with a view to adding specials aligned with the seasons.
In the mix is the RFC (Rodeo Fried Chicken), with jalapeno-brined chook served in fat slices of Rustico Bakery sourdough, and the Rodeo Reuben, which is loaded with cabbage pickled in-house. Some breakfast options are also on offer, including two sandwiches (go for the smoked bacon and egg on Turkish, it’s a beauty), classic croissants from Prove Patisserie, and a crunchy house-made granola. You can also buy jars of SA-made Nice Pickles, Salt Gang chilli crisp and Drizzle chilli oil off the shelf, plus loaves of sourdough and packs of Czechowicz’s granola to take home.
The coffee is by local specialty roaster Pogo – which makes sense given Monfries is the man behind the brand and its popular espresso bars in the city and Kent Town. Rodeo serves its own Good Luck blend, plus a couple of other Pogo single origins and filter products.
“We’re pretty thrilled with how congruent it all is,” Monfries tells Broadsheet. “We’re excited to keep developing ideas and concepts.”
Rodeo Food and Beverage
224 The Parade, Norwood
0422 543 597
Mon to Fri 6am–4pm