November 5, 2019
Il Fiorista — A Truly Surprising Restaurant Even for NoMad
A restaurant, flower boutique, and education center all at once, Il Fiorista has a day’s worth of activities all in one fragrant spot on NoMad’s 26th Street.
Mario and Alessandra De Benedetti emigrated from Italy two years ago to start their dream restaurant, newly opened in September. As they developed the concept for their business, what started as an appreciation for flowers as decor soon blossomed into a passion for all things floral.
Alessandra dedicated herself to researching their medicinal and health benefits, finding that flowers have been used to treat anything from minor ailments like fevers to chronic conditions like cancer. The couple then worked alongside executive chef Garrison Price to craft a flower-centric menu that explores their unique, natural flavors and textures.
Their dishes change seasonally—“Our menu, like flowers, changes frequently,” they note on their website. Current dinner options include an intriguing sunflower dip (petals and shoots included) with seeded crackers and an Arctic char served with grilled peach, sprouted hazelnuts, and succulents. Much of their ingredients are sourced organically and locally, as part of their overall commitment to sustainability and wellbeing. After success with its dinner menu, Il Fiorista has just started serving lunch options and will soon offer breakfast, all-day cafe, and grab-and-go items as well.
For your after-hours flower needs, their cocktail list features uncommon ingredients such as bergamot, sweet basil seeds, thistle, and flowering coriander—things you’d expect to encounter at an apothecary instead of on a night out, but the results are both delicious and highly Instagrammable.
During those times when the concrete jungle just isn’t green enough, Il Fiorista serves as a natural haven, with seasonal floral arrangements and traditional bouquets available, as well as workshops open to the public that will teach you everything you ever wanted to know about edible flowers and the right way to arrange an attractive bouquet.
The space should also appeal to any design lovers or architects in our neighborhood, as it was designed by Elizabeth Roberts to mimic the “organic” and “raw” nature of the restaurant itself, using textured plaster on certain walls for a “softer” atmosphere and a large window in the private dining area to “(evoke) the feeling of a greenhouse.”
For anyone with an adventurous streak and a craving for food as beautiful as it is (literally) succulent, Il Fiorista will broaden your palate and leave you with a memorable meal — and perhaps a newfound desire for a green thumb.
17 West 26th Street
New York, NY 10010
Monday to Thursday:
11:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
5:30 –11 p.m.
11:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
5:30 – 11 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday:
5:30 – 11 p.m.