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Selby opens garden-to-table restaurant The Green Orchid

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  • | 5:00 a.m. February 28, 2024
The Green Orchid restaurant at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens is restricted to Selby members or those who have paid the $26 admission fee.
The Green Orchid restaurant at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens is restricted to Selby members or those who have paid the $26 admission fee.
Image courtesy of Ryan Gamma
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Marie Selby Botanical Gardens has officially opened its new restaurant, The Green Orchid by Michael's On East.

The restaurant is part of Selby's Phase 1 master plan expansion, which was inaugurated Jan. 11. The new facilities include a welcome center, a plant research center and a Living Energy Access Facility that houses parking, a gift shop and The Green Orchid.

The 150-seat restaurant has indoor and outdoor seating and is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily. It is restricted to Selby Gardens members and those who have paid a $26 admission fee. Reservations are not required. 

The Green Orchid is solar-powered and wants to become the world's first net-positive-energy restaurant, meaning it generates more energy than it uses.

Operated by award-winning Sarasota restaurant Michael's on East, The Green Orchid is a garden-to-table eatery. Its seasonal menu uses fresh produce from the Drs. Andrew and Judith Economos Rooftop Edible Garden maintained by Operation EcoVets, a nonprofit group for military veterans.

The bar at The Green Orchid, the new solar-powered restaurant at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens.
Image courtesy of Ryan Gamma

“The new restaurant is a great fit for Selby Gardens, with a focus on sustainability and providing wonderful dishes with ingredients from local farms and our rooftop garden,” said Jennifer Rominiecki, president and CEO of Selby Gardens, in a statement. “Our goal is to be best-in-class in everything we do, and The Green Orchid meets that standard.”

The structure that houses The Green Orchid is topped with a 50,000-square-foot solar array and includes a filtration system to treat stormwater runoff and return clean water to Sarasota Bay. 

Going beyond the industry's eco-friendly LEED certification, Selby Gardens is seeking “Petal” certification through The Living Future Institute. It will be free of toxic chemicals.

The Green Orchid's kitchen was designed by renowned designer Jimi Yui and features state-of-the-art electric and induction cooking equipment. No gas or flame will be used in any part of the kitchen.

The menu features fresh selections designed to showcase the versatility of vegetables and grains, including vegan and vegetarian options. Entrées include the Green Orchid Salad and Cape Malay Street Tacos, with a Lavender-Infused Crème Brûlée for dessert.

"We are focused on making the garden-to-table offerings at The Green Orchid both fresh and distinctive,” said Michael Klauber, co-proprietor of Michael’s On East, in a statement. “Doing garden-to-table well – especially while using electric and induction cooking techniques – requires a high level of skill and inventiveness. We believe that visitors will be impressed.”


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