BY ANNETTE SEMERDJIAN| Los Angeles locals are always looking for new ways to stay healthy, often following the guidelines of vegan or gluten-free lifestyles. Silver Lake’s newest restaurant and market, Botanica, provides healthy, feel good meals without the (often constricting) rules of health lifestyles.
It’s simple: there are no refined sugars, processed foods, or products of industrial agriculture and aquaculture. All the dairy, veggies and fruits are locally grown, the meat is sustainably raised, and the seafood selections are wild catches.
Botanica’s larders have the highest standards of upkeep in order to frequently serve dishes that are fresh and colorful for diners to enjoy guilt-free. Aside from the cookbooks and other products made purchasable at Botanica, there are also guidelines to start cooking better meals at home, such as the recipe for Roasted Eggplant with Jeweled Herb Salad showcased in the first issue of their namesake publication, Botanica Magazine. If that doesn’t get you, you can save your appetite for some of the more exotic restaurant offerings, like Asparagus Tortilla Española, Cast-Iron Pimenton Clams, and Shaved Roots & Fruit.
The co-founders of Botanica, Heather Sperling and Emily Fiffer, have spent years of their friendship in the kitchen. Sperling has over 20 years of experience experimenting with all things culinary. She was also an editor of multiple food and restaurant focused publications.
Fiffer used to be the editor for DailyCandy before it got the ax in 2014, as well as a contributor to several other publications. She began her journey as a chef in London at Yotam Ottolenghi’s Nopi and Sam & Sam Clark’s Moro.
The two found L.A. to be the perfect place for the opening of Botanica after experiencing some of the fresh produce a local farmer’s market had to offer, according to an interview for LAist.
“All the food we’re serving in the restaurant will appear online. Nothing is secret, there is no proprietary information. We want to share. Our dream was to have a home cook in Sweden find our recipes online, and then one day come visit LA and try our food in the restaurant,” Fiffer said.
Although the organic market and food industry in Los Angeles have taken full advantage of trendy labels like “vegan” and “gluten-free,” it’s good to know the people behind Botanica are genuinely serving food for health-conscious Angelenos.