The Grand Opening of Green Space

ScottWrightadTOPThe Grand Opening of GreenNewWay_Jazz_Tuesdays Space

(Crystal A. Proxmire, some photos courtesy of Ann Warner, Dec. 2, 2015)

Healthy food.

Plant-based diet.

These are not labels that necessarily makes the average diner’s mouth water, but cardiologist Dr. Joel Kahn and his son Daniel are making that happen with the grand opening of Green Space Café in Ferndale.

The father-son team combined two storefronts, formerly Just 4 Us and Maria’s, and turned it into a plant-based restaurant and craft cocktail bar. But it’s not just salads and soups. Green Space Café has DDAnew01a variety of gourmet dishes that change based on items are available.

After a few test runs, the Kahns hosted a ribbon-cutting on Dec. 1 and opened to the public later that same evening. Before Daniel took the big Ferndale Area Chamber of Commerce scissors to the giant green bow, Dr. Kahn joked about picking Ferndale because they wanted a city with a plant-based name, next to a city with a plant-based name, Oak Park.

The heart-healthy menu for the opening day had many options, including:

A Cremini Tempeh Slider, which is a Cremini mushroom and black bean tempeh burger topped with roasted jalapeno marmalade, avocado cream, local lettuces and a toothpick holding up an adornment of pickle.

Grilled Avocado with garbanzo corn salad, mild sweet potato chocolate mole sauce and garden16_mindy_domkehouse-made crackers.

Korean Taquito, made with fresh cooked mug bean and rice soft “tortilla” roll with house-made Korean gochujang marinated tofu, kimchee and pickled avocado.

Green Space Salad, made with broccoli, cauliflower, Jerusalem artichokes, carrots, cucumber, tomato, pickled onions, local greens, sprouts, cherries, dukkha and a choice of dressing.

In addition to the food, Green Space offers an unusual selection of beverages. There is kombucha and house-made fizzy drinks. And for those who enjoy a good cocktail, there are choices like The Greenhouse (gin, Drought #3, elderflower, orange and cava), the West Side Sarsaparilla (Old Overholt Rye, Pimm’s, Sambuca, Lemon and Neu Root Beer Kombucha) and gardenfreshADSucker Punch (Burbon, House Made Switchel, Molasses, Lime and Angostura Bitters).

The atmosphere is as detail-oriented as the menu. Beautiful wood floors, railroad track-like panels and Jenga-like columns are complemented by sections of bright greenery. Guests come and go past a collection of tropical plants.  And the high ceilings show off the architecture of the space. The remodeling and design was done by John Janviriya, whose décor was also seen at Crave Lounge in Dearborn and the former Chen Chow restaurant in Birmingham.

Green Space also has partnered with Drought, a company that bottles raw, organic, cold-pressed juices. Bottles are for sale in the front of the restaurant and the juice is used in some of the beverage choices.

Garden Fresh Gourmet founder Jack Aronson was on hand for the ribbon-cutting and to talk about Ferndale’s role in the independent food revolution. Aronson’s company, best known for ctechadtortilla chips, salsa and hummus, was recently sold to Campbell’s with a promise of keeping the quality and care the same. His incubator program, Seed, helps small food producers make it by providing the right kind of kitchen, equipment, and expertise in packaging and food safety standards to help get products out to market. Though the program is on hold as the company transitions, Aronson remains involved in helping businesses like Green Space succeed by sharing his expertise and making connections.

He spoke about Drought, and how they recently made the move to a facility on Woodward Heights in Ferndale. “Plymouth was a nice town, but I really thought Drought should be here,” he said. “We’ve got a big food scene here… a lot of great things are happening in Ferndale and this is the latest.”

Green Space Cafe is located at 215 W. Nine Mile Road, Ferndale. Their website is http://www.greenspacecafe.com.20151202_green_space_01 20151202_green_space_02 20151202_green_space_03  20151202_green_space_05 20151202_green_space_06 20151202_green_space_07 20151202_green_space_08 20151202_green_space_09 20151202_green_space_010 20151202_green_space_011 20151202_green_space_012 20151202_green_space_013 20151202_green_space_014 20151202_green_space_015 20151202_green_space_016 20151202_green_space_017 20151202_green_space_018 20151202_green_space_022 20151202_green_space_077

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