Graham Driver, Driver's Market

The grocery curator: Graham Driver

Graham, a partner in the store (and Adam’s brother) takes on a lot of different roles around the store, but by far his favorite one is sourcing products. “He ensures that we live up to our standards,” Adam says. Graham says, “I take that responsibility seriously. We’ve created a climate where people trust the products we put on the shelves because we’ve done the research for them.”
Graham first came to Sausalito in 2005, and worked with Adam at The Real Food Company for a few years as a buyer. That first piqued his appetite for natural and specialty foods. He went back to University of Michigan for a degree in psychology (“I use that every day now!” he quips). Adam asked him to come back out to Sausalito and help (literally) build Driver’s and be his partner in running the store. “I’m sure going into business with your sibling can be a risky proposition for some, but I never had a doubt,” he says. “It sounded like a dream come true, and it has been just that.”

“What’s a drivers market?”

When Graham first started out, he would research interesting products and cold-call vendors. “They’d be like, what’s a drivers market?” Graham recalls. “Now that we’re a bit more established, a lot of cool companies are coming to us. It makes my day when someone comes in and says, ‘Hey, I was talking to so-and-so at the farmer’s market and they told me I had to get my stuff into Driver’s!'”

Getting your stuff into Driver’s means your product quality and the sourcing of your ingredients meets the store’s standards. “Seeking out great small-scale producers and forming working relationships is one of my favorite aspects of my job.” Other favorite things include working in “one of the most beautiful places on earth.” “It all inspires me so much,” Graham says, “It seems that almost every day lately at least one person will come up to me and say how grateful they are for the market. What more could you ask for?”

And there are unexpected lessons, Graham adds: “Even organic pastries must be consumed in moderation.”


Jonathan Alexander and Graham Driver | Driver's Market

Jonathan Alexander joins Graham Driver for a tea tasting at a vendor’s.