Opened in 2019, The Local Geelong is an all-day eatery devoted to dough. From early morning it styles itself as a brunch spot serving pastries and breads. And on certain nights of the week, it transforms into a smart neighbourhood wine bar, Enoteca, with small plates, antipasti and regional vino on the menu.
The brunch selection changes often – the result of owner Ben McLachlan’s commitment to locally-sourced produce. Past highlights include house-made fruit toast with spreads, spiced tomato and eggs baked in the kitchen’s wood fire oven, and roasted zucchini on sourdough with herbs and fior di latte crafted by local cheesemaker, That’s Amore. Expect a daily rotation of sandwiches and salads, too.
For the enoteca, chef Jackson Fort, formerly of Igni, Cutler and Tulip, serves a seasonal menu of snacks and plates to go with an all-Victorian wine list, along with craft beer, spirits and fresh cocktails.
You might start with oysters with lemon and mignonette, followed by some charcuterie. Then it’s on to larger dishes such as market fish of the day served with zucchini and prawn sauce, or a perfectly-cooked hangar steak. No matter what time you visit, the menu is stacked with fresh produce supplied by a cast of different family-run operations from the area.
The venue’s centrepiece is a white-tiled woodfire oven. And all along the front window inside, you’ll find bench seating and tables for casual dining.
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