A Secret Roof Garden in Greenwich Village
By Ella Quittner
May 15, 2017
(Must see. Mike)
Walking into Rosemary’s restaurant in Greenwich Village, you would never guess there’s an edible garden overhead. But head to the back of the room to climb the metal staircase—and you will discover the source of many of the fresh herbs and seasonal vegetables on the rustic-Italian menu, including the lemon balm for that fizzy cocktail you’re eyeing (go on, order it).
ll gardening is done by hand. “We love the garden, and we love how it affects what we cook. While it’s too small to feed every single person who comes into the restaurant,” says Moises, “it’s a projection of the care we put into our restaurant.” Rosemary’s also has a farm upstate, a source of additional produce (greenmarket partners also supply vegetables and herbs year-round).
About the farm’s beginning (June 2012):
Owner Carlos Suarez, the mind behind Rosemary’s acclaimed West Village neighbor BOBO (also designed by Dekar Designs), completed Rosemary’s garden on May 10, after only a two-day construction. He got help on the design and installation from his buddies at The Brooklyn Grange, who created a commercial organic farm on a Long Island City, Queens rooftop, with another on the way in the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
Suarez was first introduced to urban agriculture by Brooklyn Grange founder Ben Flanner, who, like Suarez, got his start in finance. Instead of building a career in the field however, Suarez chose to use his business smarts to start a restaurant. He describes himself as a “culinary hobbyist” who fell in love with cooking while in college. In 2007, after a spending a year in the hedge fund world, Suarez started BOBO, which also has a garden, and a beehive, on its roof.