Q & A with owner Aimee Follette
1) What inspired you to open Sun In Bloom?
I’ve been dreaming about creating a loving and nourishing community space for most of my life. But I can specifically remember the moment my friend, Stacey Shay, and I discovered Cafe Gratitude in San Francisco. For years, I bounced back and forth between living in NYC and San Francisco. I always resonated with Park Slope and felt at home here, but was chasing my dream of living a more healthy, balanced, conscious lifestyle that I believed only a place like San Francisco offered.
Stacey and I sat down at Cafe Gratitude and I loved the space immediately. Our server approached us and mentioned that he had just moved from NYC to San Francisco for the lifestyle. The light bulb flashed and I knew that moment I had to return to New York and create a space that would offer everything I imagined desiring in the California lifestyle.
Another amazing note to my story is that when I returned and told my Grandfather I was going to settle in Park Slope, he said, “Oh yeah, there’s a street in Brooklyn named after our family… Jerrolomon Street.” So, I guess you could say, I was karmically drawn to Park Slope and Sun In Bloom is the manifestation of something spiritual that has been coming through me for a very long time.
2) You call Sun In Bloom “a holistic eco-eatery.” What does that mean to you?
An eco-eatery is a restaurant that uses earth-friendly practices to reduce waste consumption and promote sustainable solutions. Holistic means looking at the whole rather than parts. At Sun In Bloom, we focus looking at every person who walks through the door as a unique whole being. It is then our priority to nourish that person on multiple levels with the intention to create a ripple effect and nourish the entire community.
3) What is Sun In Bloom’s best-selling dish? Your favorite dish?
The best selling dishes include our Bloom Burger, Southwestern Burrito, Reuben Special, Macro Bowl, Rockin’ Veggie, Bella Divine…hmm… I could list our entire menu. What I find most exciting about Sun In Bloom’s menu is that people come in and try a variety of our dishes. They will just go down the menu and I have not received one complaint! My favorite dish is the Bella Divine. This is a sesame-ginger marinated kale salad with SIB’s raw sauerkraut, sunflower sprout, dulse, and avocado. I’m partial to this dish, because I created this recipe in my home kitchen one night when I was pulling together my favorite ingredients after a long day of teaching and practicing Bikram Yoga.
4) Why vegan (or raw, as the case may be)? Veganism still being in the minority where dietary styles are concerned, how have you come to appeal to people with such a variety of food preferences, omnivores included?
Our goal is to nourish the community and after you remove all ingredients that might be toxic to our bodies, the cuisine is vegan. I am not here to promote everyone to become vegan, but I do hope to inspire everyone to try a LIVING vegan EXPERIENCE and integrate this delicious and pleasurable cuisine into their lifestyles. It’s always inspiring to see a customer come in for a burger and sit down with our living raw burger to then come back the next week and order the Bloom Burger. Part of the process of appealing to people with a variety of food preferences, I believe, is to create a space that is inviting and welcoming, with no judgement. Again, we are not here to tell anyone how the live their life, we just hope people will try Sun In Bloom’s cuisine and delicious treats to taste the abundant flavors that are infused in food that has been prepared with organic, local ingredients and a lot of love.
5) Why is the ‘i’ in Sun In Bloom capitalized?
The “i” is capitalized because I want to emphasize that the Sun is In Bloom. We are all on a journey and constantly blooming. This name came to me one day several months before I committed to opening an eco-eatery and one day everything came together and the puzzle was complete.