You May Also Like

Lemon juice hack for salad dressing

The genius way to make your creamy salad dressing healthier (and make it last longer)

how black tea is good for the gut

Black tea is emerging as a gut-health hero—here’s what you need to know

Is eating eggs every day healthy

Eating this ketogenic diet staple every day could lower your risk of heart disease

chloes fruit pops

Your guide to healthy eating and drinking in the Hamptons

Healthy fresh-fruit Popsicle recipes for summer

5 fresh-fruit Popsicle recipes from Pinterest that are summer-ready and so delicious

What is culinary genomics?

Is cooking for your DNA the best way to reduce inflammation and improve gut health?

At Cafe Clover, each (delicious) dish is vetted by a nutritionist


Market Crudite (Photo: Cafe Clover)
Cafe Clover
Market Crudite (Photo: Cafe Clover)

Ever hear of a farm-to-nutritionist-to-table restaurant?

That’s one way to think about Café Clover, the pretty new eatery that just opened in the West Village (in the space that used to house 10 Downing).

The restaurant is a collaboration between restaurateurs David Rabin (The Lambs Club and Jimmy at the James Hotel), Kyle Hotchkiss Carone, and Jeff Kadish—and renowned personal trainer and Peak Performance owner Joe Dowdell. And to really meld the foodie and wellness worlds, the team brought on Peak Performance nutritionist Mike Roussell, PhD, to work on the menu with chef David Standridge, formerly of Market Table.

It’s a coming together that doesn’t often happen, especially in fine dining, save for at Rouge Tomate, where the team there even spun off their nutritional standards into a service for other restaurants, SPE Certified.

“Unlike a health food restaurant that starts with a healthy perspective, I start from a delicious food perspective and then try to eliminate unnecessary calories and also try to make things more healthy,” Standridge, says, of the Café Clover concept.

Cafe Clover
Inside the dining room (Photo: Cafe Clover)

To do that, he creates the menu and then gets a full nutritional analysis from Dr. Roussell, who will report on things like if a dish has too many calories or carbs, and then send Standridge back to the kitchen to tweak it.

That doesn’t mean, however, that the chef has abandoned his passion for flavor. In fact, far from it.

Standridge says he did lots of research into healthy ingredients he could swap into recipes. And on the seasonally shifting menu that plays out as simple thing like cooking with coconut oil to working with tons of fresh vegetables, and superfoods like ancient grains and seeds, which appear in everything from tossed onto salads to cooked into pasta.

Cafe Clover
Cauliflower Steak (Photo: Cafe Clover)

“When I build a dish, I think about the flavors and texture and balance that I want,” he says. “Like if I want that crunch in a salad, instead of croutons, what else can I use? Chia seeds give us the nice crunch, and bonus, they’re healthy.”

So, you’ll find them sprinkled on the Sweet Gem Wedges with shaved roots and herbs. Homemade tagliatelle is prepared with less flour to make room for cooked red quinoa in the dough, and it’s served with beet greens and maitake mushrooms, making it infinitely savory and satisfying. There’s also salmon served with spaghetti squash and turnip greens and a Cauliflower Steak with romesco and vegetable chutney.

And meals start with flavorful Flax, Chia, and Sunflower seed crackers made with just water and seasonings and served with dreamy butternut squash hummus. (You won’t miss the bread basket—I swear!)

Cafe Clover
Quinoa Tagliatelle (Photo: Cafe Clover)

Though Standridge seems to be having a serious (and successful) love affair with healthy ingredients, he’s kept honest by the nutritionist on his shoulder, just in case. “A lot of it is about the responsibility to give the guest a wholesome meal that’s not 1,000 calories more than they expected it to be,” he says. He seems very much up to the challenge. —Lisa Elaine Held

Cafe Clover, 10 Downing St., at Sixth Ave., West Village, www.cafeclovernyc.com

Loading More Posts...

You May Also Like

Is eating eggs every day healthy

Eating this ketogenic diet staple every day could lower your risk of heart disease

Eccedentesiast cocktail

This cocktail inspired by Chinese medicine is infused with pain-relieving herbs

beet hummus

How to make an immune-boosting beet hummus in less than 10 minutes

chloes fruit pops

Your guide to healthy eating and drinking in the Hamptons

how black tea is good for the gut

Black tea is emerging as a gut-health hero—here’s what you need to know

Lemon juice hack for salad dressing

The genius way to make your creamy salad dressing healthier (and make it last longer)