The Daily Grind owner Saundra Burns and husband Cody are pictured inside the restaurant in uptown Hillsboro. (HCP Photos/Caitlin Forsha)
The Daily Grind owner Saundra Burns and husband Cody are pictured inside the restaurant in uptown Hillsboro. (HCP Photos/Caitlin Forsha)
A unique new restaurant in uptown Hillsboro is offering an alternative to fast food with their fresh, healthy options available seven days a week.

The Daily Grind, owned and operated by Saundra Burns, opened Monday, Oct. 21 and features coffee and baked goods in addition to their soup, salad and sandwich offerings.

Burns previously owned Details Sweet Shoppe on West Main Street in Hillsboro, where she baked and sold cupcakes. However, she said she knew from the start that she wanted to expand her menu and her restaurant space.

 


“In the first place, I was looking to open a coffee shop/bakery, but I couldn’t find anything big enough for rent,” Burns said. “It was a very small space, but I just took that space until something else opened up.”

Burns reached out to Gary Schraw, whose family owned the Pasquale’s Pizza restaurant in the building at 122 South High Street for decades.

“I was so excited when this opened up,” she said. “I called Gary and he said, ‘I’d love for you to have it.’”

Schraw also gave Burns the recipe for the famous “garlic loaf” from the Pasquale’s menu — a garlic cheese bread popular among its former patrons — to feature on the Daily Grind menu.

“He was actually back here making the garlic breads on Monday,” Burns said. “We got slammed, and I called him.”

The restaurant space has been completely remodeled, with wood tables and bars and a chalkboard paint wall where guests can write messages. On the other side is an exposed brick wall, which Burns said highlights the history of the building and pays homage to the Schraws’ business.

“I wanted to see the original brick wall because it’s one of the oldest buildings in Hillsboro,” she said. “I love the building, and I love the location. It’s so nice to be able to recreate that because it was Pasquale’s for so long.

“I wanted it to be a rustic, comfortable feel for people to bring in their laptops and their books. They do that all the time, and I just love it.”

Burns said that she has a degree in business, which has helped her with the “learning curve” of opening the Daily Grind, as she has management experience. And although Burns doesn’t have a background in the restaurant industry, friends and family encouraged her to start her own business based on her delicious food and baked goods.

“All these recipes, I came up with and designed myself, and all of them I know are good because they’re things I like to eat,” Burns said. “We’ll be adding more and introducing new items. We’ve already introduced a sloppy joe panini — my sloppy joes are a favorite amongst my friends and family because I have a secret ingredient.”

The menu features lighter options, such as soups, salads and wraps, as well as paninis. The soups (including chicken tortilla, chili, vegetable and potato bacon) are made from scratch. Burns said they also offer some healthier bread options, such as wheatberry and gluten-free.

Burns developed the unique menu herself, with options that you can’t find elsewhere in Hillsboro, like a blueberry panini, an avocado bacon grilled cheese and tomato basil toast.

“All of the recipes I have here are recipes I’ve made up, with things that I like,” Burns said.

Even the side options are healthier — as Burns said, “there’s no fried food.” Options include salads — including pasta salad and pea salad — and sweet potato souffle.

“My sweet potato souffle is better than Ruth’s Chris’s,” Burns said.

In the morning, bagels, donuts, parfaits and breakfast sandwiches are available. Burns also continues to bake and sells desserts, including cakes, cookies and cupcakes.

The coffee side of the menu includes a variety of espresso drinks, including Americanos, cortados, macchiatos, cappuccino and lattes, with limited flavor options for the lattes. Hot chocolate, juices, a selection of teas and chai are also available.

“We don’t offer a huge variety of syrups, and that’s my choice,” Burns said of their coffee menu. “I wanted it to be simple, classic. The more simple you make it, the more consistent it stays.

“I wanted to cater to people who like traditional coffee, like the espressos, the cortados, cappuccinos, the macchiatos — the traditional ones — and we are also educating our customers about what the differences are between those types of coffees. My idea was to bring a quality coffee and make it about the coffee and the drink itself, not the syrup.”

Burns said they are still working on the best processes for preparing orders “as quick as we can without jeopardizing the food,” adding that their food is being made carefully and fresh to order.

“We toast the bread perfectly and make sure the ingredients are fresh,” she said. “We pick through everything to make sure it looks good before we put it on the sandwich and salads. They have to pick through the lettuce to make sure there’s no brown lettuce or white lettuce. I want to have the best salads in town.”

The response has been positive so far, according to Burns, with a steady stream of customers every day sampling the food items on the menu.

“It’s as fresh as we can get it without growing it in the backyard,” Burns said.

The Daily Grind is open Monday through Friday, 6:30 a.m.-8 p.m.; Saturday, 8 a.m.-8 p.m.; and Sunday, 8 a.m.-7 p.m. They also offer a pickup window.

“I wanted to be available for whenever anyone driving through wants to stop for coffee, or after church, people might want to go and meet and watch TV and have a cup of coffee and a cupcake,” Burns said. “I wanted to make sure that if people wanted to come in, we would be able to serve them.”

In their first two weeks of business, Burns said that the response has “tremendously” exceeded her expectations.

“I had no idea it was going to go over this well,” she said. “We’ve gotten really good feedback so far.”

For more on The Daily Grind, visit https://www.grindcafebakery.com or follow them on Facebook.