One drizzly morning in Midtown, I met Emily Pinon from Bastille Flowers and Events NYC for a tour of the infamous Flower Market. I had heard tales of shop after shop with stalls of flowers from all corners of the world to which access was only granted to a select few florists in the city. It was a haphazard free-for-all where latecomers would miss out on the choicest buds and you really had to be “in the know” to walk out with anything of note. It sounded to me like it would be a bazaar on par with one in Abu Dabi and I prepared myself to be confronted with haggling patrons fighting over the last cherry blossom branches.
But when I entered through the doors of Dutch Flower Line, I was greeted with a very thoughtful presentation of stunning florals and foliage. The streamlined rows contained bursts of color that brought a ray of hope into the overcast day. The warmth of the staff, the variety of options and the clear dedication to the beauty of these growing gems was impressive.
As I walked through the shop with Emily as a guide, I started recognizing many of the flowers that we use on our creations at Ron Ben-Israel Cakes. As we often find inspiration in the floral designs for a wedding or celebration, it is no wonder that certain varietals leapt out at me with their cheery petals and winking stamens as if to say, “Welcome! We’re glad you’re here!”
I began taking pictures of all of my new floral friends to compare what I saw in real life to our flowers back in the studio+bakery 10 blocks away. Emily was kind enough to correct me when I mistook an azalea tree for a bougainvillea tree but I was undaunted as I felt like a Jeopardy champion every time I got a flower correct. “These are bulbous, small petaled delights that come in pink, blue and white.” What are hydrangeas, Alex?
It really was a stunning experience to go in each shop and lay eyes on row after row of blossoming beauty and I am very grateful to Emily Pinon for guiding me through the experience. Everyone we met was so accommodating and gracious and the idea of the Abu Dabi bazaar faded in my memory. The Flower Market is on par with Fifth Avenue and Madison with the elegance of their goods and the covetous nature of the wares. I had to resist scooping up multiple bundles of fringe tulips and fuchsia peonies more than once. It is just another hidden gem in this great city that once stumbled upon, renews your faith that this world isn’t all concrete and steel. This city is also a cake jungle complete with flowers of sugar and layers of fondant. It is a floral designer’s dreamworld where they can ring tiny little bells of joy, aka Lily-of-the-Valley, bringing a smile to all they meet. A lovely day courtesy of a lovely person and a lovely little slideshow below of all my snaps (and a few of their sugar flower twins…)