First Look

Deep Ellum Postal and Grocer Has Big Dreams for a Little Bodega in Deep Ellum

Brandon Castillo is the kind of guy every neighborhood or movement needs. In this case, Deep Ellum has him. And the movement is making the area a more sustainable and walkable one. Recently, he opened Deep Ellum Postal and Grocer at 3100 Main Street, where he carefully fills a little shop, fronted with post-office boxes, with goods that are a balance between what the locals need and a push for other small businesses in the city.

Previous projects for Castillo include the Deep Ellum Outdoor Market, which is a monthly market that brings area artists and businesses out to the streets to mingle with the locals. His new small retail space is designed with the same intent. Long term, Castillo has big dreams for a little locally sourced bodega.

In addition to the post office boxes, Post and Grocer offers some other amenities, like packaging and shipping as well as a notary service. The rest of the store is slowly being filled as Castillo closely monitors what the locals are looking for from his spot. It's a mix of daily stuff we all need (toothpaste), quick and cheap bites (Ramen noodles, bananas) and eventually, meals to go.

For now, at the front of the store is a small farm stand where a half dozen milk crates are filled with produce from the garden at Paul Quinn College or whoever else might have fresh goods that week.

Coolers in the back are stocked with sweets from Zen Baking Company, Cita's Salsas, Blue Yarn Farm free-range eggs from Bolivar, Texas. Castillo has a small collection of classic vinyl records, a used book exchange and the locally made Wackym's Cookies.

Next Friday, September 27, P&G will celebrate its grand opening with a small market in the parking lot adjacent to the building. There will be several area vendors, including Comeback Creek Farms, the (great) Texas Honeybee Guild and Damn Good Heat salsa. Slow Food leader (and Dallas Observer contributor) Liz Goulding will host a free class on how to buy and eat local at 6:30 p.m. and Deep Ellum Brewing Company is donating beer to keep you all hydrated.

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Lauren Drewes Daniels is the Dallas Observer's food editor. She started writing about local restaurants, chefs, beer and kouign-amanns in 2011. She's driven through two dirt devils and is certain they were both some type of cosmic force.