Grindcore House Cafe

by Jeanette Neuner

Whether you are looking for a quick and tasty vegan bite, or a relaxing and quiet environment for studying or socializing, Grindcore House Café, has it. Grindcore is a vegan, community-oriented space, nestled in the heart of South Philadelphia’s upcoming Pennsport neighborhood.

Opened in late August of 2010, this café has already established strong community support. Nearly once a month, Grindcore opens its doors to the public for film screenings, and regularly displays local artists’ work. Past events have also included talks by regional authors and activists.

This Victorian row-home style café is divided into two distinct areas – the front-end has counter-style seating, while the homey living room area in the back provides for quiet studying or relaxing. The walls are lined with old movie posters, a large, cozy couch makes up part of the rear seating area, and two large bookcases store a broad selection of reading materials for customers to peruse. This division of space is both functional and tasteful, making it one of the most attractive aspects of the café’s design.

Both vegans and non-vegans alike enjoy the menu offerings here, and the customers range from young, hip Philadelphians to families and professionals. One of the reasons Grindcore is so accessible is that their drinks and food items are very reasonably priced. Coffee starts at $1.50 a cup – $1.25 if you drink it in house (to reward you for being environmentally friendly!). For breakfast, they offer a wide range of bagel sandwiches with a nice selection of spreads all within the $2-$3 range. And for a quick lunch or dinner, their sandwiches range from a gourmet PB&J to a hearty Seitan sandwich with all the fixings, all for $7 or less.

One of their most popular sandwiches is the Greenwich, made from homemade hummus, avocado, spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers and their signature seed mix, all for $5. Grindhouse is open until 8 pm every day making their delectable, generously potioned vegan or vegan gluten-free dessert items for between $3-5, pretty accessible. To top it off, everything on their menu is fresh and local, furthering their commitment to community partnership.

Between its strictly vegan menu and open support for local organizations such as Food, Not Bombs, Philadelphia and PAWS Animal Rescue, activism is at the core of Grindcore’s mission. “This focus on social change has grown out of a tight collaborative relationship between the neighborhood patrons and the Café”, says owner Dave, a South Philly local.

Grindcore has successfully bridged the gap as a politically conscious, yet sophisticated cafe, something no other South Philadelphia coffeehouse has done to date. Located in a socially and ethnically diverse section of the city, Grindcore has done a great job of bringing the community together in ways that everyone can appreciate. Whether you’d like an open and comfortable space to hang out or are looking to start the next revolution, (or anything in between), Grindcore is the place to be.

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