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New Neighbor: Il Fiorista

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership welcomes Il Fiorista to the neighborhood. Italian for “The Florist,” the restaurant, floral boutique, and education center celebrates the myriad benefits of flowers and herbs with a deep commitment to sustainability. Italian husband and wife duo Alessandra and Mario De Benedetti dreamed of opening a business in hospitality together. The couple packed up their life in Italy and moved to New York to open Il Fiorista at 17 West 26th Street where their shared passion for flowers, hospitality, and design came to life. The De Benedetti's' main goal is to educate the public about the health and wellness benefits of flowers. 

"We felt a strong connection to the energy of the Flatiron District from the beginning and that is why we chose it as the first home of Il Fiorista. The proximity to the flower district, the architecture of the buildings, including ours, and the stories all of these things solidified our choice. The neighborhood events hosted in the [Madison Square] park are in line with our educational outlet at Il Fiorista as well"  says co-owners Alessandra and Mario De Benedetti. "Flatiron is a communal treasure and we are thrilled to engage with the incredible people who live, work and visit here."


Working with local and regional farmers, executive chef Garrison Price created a menu inspired by Mediterranean flavors with a focus on flowers and herbs in their many edible forms, while expert mixologist Gates Otsuji carefully curated floral cocktails. All parts of the flower are used across the dishes and drinks in obvious and less obvious ways. The restaurant is starting with dinner service with breakfast, lunch, and an all-day cafe coming soon. Dinner options include a variety of unique creations including the Heritage Chicken (pictured above) made with foraged mushrooms, red okra, and mustard seeds, and the Arctic Char made with grilled peaches, sprouted hazelnuts, and succulents. The elevated cocktail concoctions are as pleasing to the eye as they are to the palette. The drinks incorporate herbal, floral, and fruity flavors and aromas. The Jitterbug Perfume cocktail features gin, hibiscus, rose hips, chamomile, basil, Timur peppercorn, and pomegranate. The Flowers Bloom cocktail (pictured below) consists of strawberry tomato shrub, Chiloe pepper, jasmine pearls, seltzer.  

Beyond providing aesthetic pleasure, Il Fiorista believes that flowers can elevate a dish, positively impact health and wellness, and bring people together. Along with the restaurant and bar, Il Fiorista serves as an educational center and floral boutique. The restaurant hosts educational programming like DIY Bouquet Making, Edible Flowers 101, fermenting classes, and a variety of topics to come. The floral boutique offers different flower arrangements and bouquets featuring seasonal flowers. A store-front table offering la carte stems of flowers that diners can buy to take home with them is to come. The on-site shop will sell books and home goods as well. 


Il Fiorista emphasizes the importance of sustainability. With locally and regionally sourced flowers and food, water-use reduction and composting methods, and recyclable and compostable packaging, sustainability and social responsibility are at the core of Il Fiorista's mission. On top of its unique menu and commitment to sustainability, Il Fiorista boasts a beautiful space. Designed by award-winning architect Elizabeth Roberts, the bright, 85-seat space features energetic murals by artist Leanne Shapton and custom furnishings by Spanish designer Patricia Urquiola. Stepping inside elicits feelings of a magical garden.

 Il Fiorista is open every day from 5 pm to 11 pm. Stop in and take some time to smell the roses.


Il Fiorista, 17 West 26th Street between Broadway and Sixth Avenue, (646) 490-82409, @ilfioristanyc