The idea behind Keevil & Keevil Grocery and Kitchen is twofold: One, Brookville Restaurant chef/owner Harrison Keevil wanted to be able to interact with his customers again like he did in the open kitchens he’s worked in in the past, and two, he really wanted to do breakfast. His wife and co-owner, Jennifer, says Harrison has wanted to cook breakfast from the moment she met him, and, indeed, the breakfast sandwiches on the grocery’s menu have been some of the most popular items in the first week it’s been open.
The Keevils officially took over the space, which housed Gibson’s Grocery since 1977, June 1, and held a soft opening July 18. What they found is how much their neighborhood (the Keevils live in Belmont) relied on having a grocery store nearby—a place for people to run to get one last ingredient for dinner, or where they can buy a cool drink. As the Keevils were updating the store with a fresh coat of paint, cleaning the floors and adding a stove and kitchen, people would constantly stop by to ask when they were opening. Right now, the couple is listening to their customers’ needs and wants as for what kinds of items they’ll stock; they’ve already had requests for cheese, milk and pasta. But the grocery’s focus will mirror that of their restaurant: highlighting local items. Most of the produce they use and sell is from the Local Food Hub (barring the produce a neighbor down the street brought from her own garden), and they also stock Timbercreek Market meat, mushrooms from Sharondale Farm, cheese from Caromont Farm—the list goes on.
Currently the grocery, open from 7am-3pm Monday through Saturday, offers takeaway breakfast sandwiches for $6, and for lunch “ingredient-driven, simple, affordable sandwiches at a price point for a wide majority of people,” Harrison says. The list includes turkey, Cuban, veggie, tomato and ham-and-cheese sandwiches for between $5 and $10. Harrison has also introduced a monthly chef-inspired sandwich, in which he asks his friends and peers what they want him to make for them. He started off with Tomas Rahal’s (owner of Mas) request for an egg salad sandwich. Harrison got Rahal’s seal of approval for his simple approach: organic eggs from Timbercreek Market, Duke’s mayonnaise, salt, pepper, lettuce and tomato on rye bread from Albemarle Baking Company. The sandwich has been so popular, Jennifer says they’ll likely keep it on the permanent menu, which they’ll solidify in the next couple of weeks. The menu will change seasonally, and once the oven’s hood is installed in the coming weeks, the grocery will extend its hours to 7pm and also offer take-home dinners in which you pick your main dish and sides and reheat them at home.
“You know how people say location is everything? It’s really, really true,” Jennifer says. “This space had a really nice energy to it. It’s cool for us to get to walk here. We’ve lived here for four years and met so many people we didn’t know.”
Open for business…Miso Sweet Ramen + Donuts held its official grand reopening July 23. And Twisted Branch Tea Bazaar reopened two weeks ago; both were affected by the late-June fire at Ike’s Underground Vintage Clothing and Strange Cargo. New digs…Burger Bach, a New Zealand-inspired gastro pub, will open soon in the former PastureQ space on Bond Street in The Shops at Stonefield. Closer to Costco, Mission BBQ, Uncle Maddio’s Pizza and BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse have all claimed spots.
–Jessica Luck and Faith Schweikert