Are you craving great vegan cheese but you’re not in the mood to drive? Or, maybe you’re reminiscing about the pastry you had on your LA road trip or the pasta you drooled over in San Francisco on a date.

No need to go out. Locale has you covered. Launched out of the Bay Area in 2020, Locale has been delivering city boxes including produce, packaged goods, juices, meals and flowers to foodies in the San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego regions. Since a soft San Diego launch on Memorial Day, orders here have gone up 150 percent, according to company co-founder Jonathan Friedland.

Jonathan Friedland (left) and Christopher Clark, co-founders of Locale. Image: Courtesy of Locale.

Friedland and fellow co-founder Christopher Clark are longtime friends from Los Gatos, near San Jose. Neither had food business background. Friedland has an electrical engineering degree from UCLA and Clark graduated with a finance degree from Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo. During the Covid lockdown, they noticed the normally long line outside their favorite Los Gatos bakery disappeared. Bakery owners also confirmed the store wasn’t on delivery apps such as DoorDash. Even if the store did use an app, fees would have made small orders too expensive for customers. Plus, it was tough to know how many bakery items to produce and how to do it quickly on demand, during a lockdown.

Locale's boxes offer a mix of farmed produce, packaged food, meals, juices and more. Image: Courtesy of Locale.

So, Friedland and Clark got busy helping Bay Area growers, vendors, and eateries get their products moving. They began in their own region, then launched in Los Angeles seven months ago. Now, San Diegans can also order a box of goodies from their own city or enjoy selections of delectable Bay Area and LA concepts. Boxes can be ordered as gifts and sent to friends and family too.

Partners include more than 100 companies, such as Encinitas-based GOODONYA, Langer’s Delicatessen-Restaurant from LA, and Comal in Berkeley. Popular items include Porto’s potato balls, burritos from Burritos La Palma, chicken pot pie from Pop Pie Co., Prager Brother’s baguettes, and Scratch House vegan cheeses. To see a full list of San Diego partners, click here.

Locale's current delivery zone in San Diego County. Image: Courtesy of Locale.

“We’re carving our niche by focusing on curation rather than overwhelming people with selection,” Friedland said. The delivery fee is $5. There’s no subscription or minimum order. Boxes are delivered a few days after the order, via Locale's fleet of small vans.

Last week, Locale shifted into high gear, spurred by a recent $14 million injection in seed money from Bay Area venture capital firm Andreesson Horowitz. Friedland and Clark hope to expand nationwide next year. For more information, visit ShopLocale.com.





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About the Contributor
Julie Pendray
Julie Pendray has been writing about San Diego county for four decades.Independent writer for: Palm Springs Life digital platform (covering California desert communities) and Edible San Diego.Publisher of: SpecialsNotOnTheMenu.com (featuring arts, entertainment, travel, hiking, food).
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