Nestled in a strip mall between a donut shop and Bob’s Cleaners in Hollywood is an unexpected urban eco-oasis: Locali. This green convenience store opened just a couple weeks ago and is already attracting crowds who want the convenience of 7 Eleven without the weird chemicals, genetically modified ingredients, yucky coffee and high fructose corn syrup.
Want a cup of freshly brewed, fair trade organic coffee to go? Sure — and you can even get a packet of dry soy creamer with that if you don’t have time to stir it in. Need your afternoon organic chocolate fix? Pick from Equal Exchange, Endangered Species and Green & Black’s bars. Crave a grassfed 100 percent beef hot dog? Locali’s got ready to eat Let’s Be Frank dogs — and gluten-free brownie from The Sensitive Baker for dessert.
While Locali caters to the grab-n-go crowd, new visitors will inevitably get sucked in, checking out all the cool local, organic and fair trade products they never even knew existed. Who knew you could get a biodegradable loofah kitchen scrubbie in a cute penguin shape?
For drinkers, there’s a sizable collection of organic and biodynamic wines, bottles of local and organic beers you can assemble into customized 4-packs — in reused containers! — and even organic sake. Oh, and you can browse through a small collection of KnobStoppers — vintage door wine stoppers — in case you think you won’t drink the whole bottle.
Plus, Locali has a lot of eco versions of handy everyday items, from organic cotton tampons to Twist kitchen scrubbers to Begley’s Best cleaning products. Some uber-environmentalists may cringe at organic lollipops, but others’ll appreciate the high fructose corn syrup-free sweets.
Locali really has gone out of its way to get local. I recognized a whole bunch of items from my local farmers’ market, like the Adam’s Ranch olive oil to Redwood Hill Farm goat milk products. And I saw goat milk soap from Chivas Skin Care, organic and fair trade lotions and chapsticks from Anti-Body, and copies of The Urban Homestead.
On the way out is a neat three-container recycling-and-composting system. Locali provides a few small tables and benches outside for quick dining, though those weren’t too popular on this rainy day.
I ended up leaving with a bottle of gluten-free Green’s amber ale (I was curious) and an organic spinach-and-mushroom tamale, handmade locally by La Guera Tamalera (yum!). Check out more photos of Locali here, then pay the place a visit if you're in L.A.! Wouldn't it be nice if we could magically turn all 7 Elevens into Localis?