the local was created by food lovers.

Welcome to The Local. We are extremely proud to bring you this unique experience.

local focused

The Local is centralized around the introduction of a new experience in the heart of downtown, Abilene. The team here is determined to make The Local apart of your everyday life whether you are a contemporary Mexican food guru, a craft cocktail aficionado, or somewhere in-between, The Local is right for you.

Local owned

Locally owned by Abilenians, Justin and Alex Russel, the couple decided to create a restaurant in the heart of Downtown Abilene to add flare to the downtown experience. In addition to creating a new experience in Abilene, The Local aspires to give the community new opportunities to eat locally by bringing in restaurant diversity to the downtown area.

local run

Local General Manager Gabe Stokes and Executive Chef Cody Enriquez, team up after over twenty years of experience in hopes to contribute progress in their community. After a year of perfecting the local, the two plan to make their community proud by giving the locals this unique experience in downtown, Abilene.

a passion for community, food, and fellowship.

The Team behind your food

Cody Enriquez

What's up guys! I am Cody Enriquez, the chef behind all the madness featured in our menu. I have been cooking my entire adult life where it has been quite the journey, from where I started, to where I am now. The food I have created for The Local shows a small portion of my journey. I have had the honor, and privilege, of working under seven great, and completely different executive chefs; however, the best chef I have previously worked for is Chef Failure. I consider myself a self-trained chef who learned mostly from my mistakes. Every chef has their idol that they look to for inspiration, mine has been Willy Wonka, where “your imagination is a powerful thing”. When my cooking skill finally caught up with my imagination, I felt I was ready to embark on the journey that has become The Local. Being on this adventure, I have obtained lifelong friends, that include Justin And Alex Russel. I am extremely grateful for their trust in me, with such a big project for them, I consider myself forever in their debt. But, to the man who brought it all together, Gabe Stokes, I hold a special place in my heart. I can honestly say Gabe is a brother to me. I want everyone who enjoys my food to know that Gabe is responsible. Because he chose me, to help build this restaurant with him in our hometown. Ever since starting this project, I had one goal in my mind. I aspired to change the feeling of downtown to give the people of Abilene something unique. My kitchen staff and I will continue to do so, one taco at a time.

"We are the music makers, we are the dreamers of a dream." - Willy Wonka

General manager
Gabe Stokes

My name is Gabriel Stokes. Just like the name of our restaurant suggests, I was born and raised in Abilene. I haven’t wanted to live anywhere else. I got my start in the restaurant business, fifteen years ago at Lytle Land and Cattle, and I have loved it ever since. To me, the sound of a busy restaurant, on a weekend night, when it is bustling with activity, is like music. Seeing that guests have - not just a night out – but, an overall experience, is what drives me to coach and train our staff with an emphasis on service. Seeing our team rise above their own expectations of themselves is the most rewarding part of my job. I feel like this restaurant of ours, has been a chance - to not only add to the culture of downtown Abilene – but, also to the lives of everyone that walks through our doors. I am lucky enough to get to see that every day.

Looking to host an event/party? or just want to say hi?

Local is more than capable of catering to your future events with two designated group spaces. The Mezzanine – holding 40 guests - overlooks the entirety of the downstairs portion of the restaurant, displays exquisite art, and allows for a backdrop of downtown, Abilene. While the private party dining – holding up to 20 guests - offers a secluded setting, and Hispanic inspired photography, providing guest with a more intimate dining experience.

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