At Midtown East dining spot Ze Cafè, flowers, food and flavor collide.
The owners, Brazilian husband and wife florists, moved their flower shop around the corner and transformed the old space, a converted antique carriage space, into the dining room that stands today: an elegantly adorned restaurant with earthy wood paneling, exposed brick and, naturally, several lustrous bouquets. From the floral arrangements, to the blossoms in the soup, to the wine's floral notes, this charming French eatery is all about the flowers. Imported French wicker chairs and classical music, coupled with the atmosphere, making this dining spot one of appealing warmth.
Chef Jonathan Roman, who's cooked privately for Martha Stewart, has developed a new dinner menu featuring such delightful choices as: Wild Blossom Salad, boasting mixed greens with a colorful helping of edible blossoms (such as snap dragons, pansies and nasturtium in pink, yellow, red and purple) in a champagne vinaigrette; Long Island duck breast with persimmon purée and shallot gastique garnished with peas from a local farm; Roccheta medjool dates; Lardoons with a champagne vinaigrette rendered in bacon; Signature Soft Shell Crab Sandwich in house-made, buttery brioche and more.
For desert, the restaurant offers seven different seasonal pies, classic apple, mixed berry streusel, strawberry pistachio meringue, strawberry rhubarb, blueberry meringue, coconut cream and key lime.
Be sure to sample one of the unique food and flowery cocktail parings, such as the Hibiscus Royal, combining sweetened hibiscus flower with champagne and liquor or the Gin Blossom concocted from edible pansy and sky blue juice.
Perfect choice for Valentines Day, don’t you think?
Ze Cafè, 398 E. 52 St., New York (212) 758-1944.