1301 Locust Street
Des Moines, IA 50309
“The quality of local products is usually much higher because it is generally either in season, or an artisan product, which means it is produced with great care and good base ingredients,” Chef Carly Groben says.
Groben, the chef and owner of Proof restaurant (1301 Locust St.), dishes out fresh and exciting dishes to diners at her sleek corner restaurant. While the clean white walls and chairs set a serene atmosphere, Groben’s dishes are bursting with flavor. Her Merguez sausage flatbread is often made with Niman Ranch pork and topped with couscous and a spicy cream sauce. Groben uses local ingredients as much as she can, but hasn’t always found it easy.
“There is only so much you can do to source local produce through the winter,” Groben says. “With a menu like ours, which does not change seasonally at lunch, we are somewhat restricted to buying from global markets to obtain produce which is not grown here in the winter.”
Groben says that she still prefers sourcing from local farmers. While she has a great relationship with her salesperson at Sysco, Groben says it’s not the same as the relationship she has with farmers directly growing her product.
While Groben has run into problems sourcing food locally, she supplies her restaurant with as much as she can, pulling from markets, farmers and even her own backyard.
“Last year I had a close friend who farmed a couple acres of land almost exclusively for our restaurant use,” Groben explains. “This year I plan to join a CSA to meet needs and I also use the farmer’s markets abundantly.”
This busy chef is expanding her business as well. Groben recently opened Flour (1220 Locust St.), a pizza restaurant across the street from Proof and she strives to showcase local foods at both restaurants.