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A new generation normally takes over at Ithaca’s famous Moosewood restaurant

Ithaca, N.Y. — The Moosewood, the vegetarian cafe in downtown Ithaca that obtained all over the world fame right after its launch in 1973, has reopened this spring less than new possession.

But it’s nonetheless connected to its past: The new operator is Danica Wilcox. She’s the daughter of Kip Wilcox, a founding member of the Moosewood Collective, which operated the cafe and served pioneer the ideas of “plant forward” dining and farm-to-desk delicacies in the 1970s.

The Moosewood, positioned in the ground level of the Dewitt Creating at 215 N. Cayuga St., reopened at the close of March right after remaining closed for numerous months for the duration of renovations.

It will continue to keep it concentrate on a vegetarian menu, but with renewed emphasis on locally sourced substances and some innovations, Danica Wilcox explained.

“We’re hoping to adapt, reimagine and introduce Moosewood to a new era,” mentioned Wilcox, who is operating the restaurant with her spouse, artist Nicholas Woods.

“The menu has often provided fish through the a long time – which we may possibly reintroduce – but our concentrate suitable now is to spotlight the gorgeous develop, grains, dairy and wine available in our location,” Wilcox reported in a news launch. “The first new menu celebrates authentically vegetarian delicacies.”

The menu involves longtime Moosewood favorites like its Fudge Brownie, Spanakopita, and Poached Pears with pistachios. New seasonal dishes include things like a Rosemary Crepe with local Japanese sweet potato, red quinoa, roasted leeks, gruyere and lemon bechamel and a Spicy Coconut Curry with neighborhood sweet potato, rutabaga, romanesco, and turnips, served with a cashew daikon raita.

There is also a locally sourced New York State Cheese Board and a cocktail menu featuring spirits from Finger Lakes space distilleries. It also serves a collection of New York point out wines.

The cafe is shifting from a diner-style provider program to a single that is a “more elevated, fining eating technique,” Wilcox reported.

Wilcox, who owned a design and style store and artwork gallery in Spain for a 10 years before returning to Ithaca, is also altering the decor a bit to mirror the original “Deco-era” style from the early ‘70s. It functions Shaker-design wooden home furniture, present day lighting and artworks developed by Woods. The Moosewood has both of those indoor and outdoor seating.

The Moosewood has about 40 workforce, a number of of whom have been with it since the start out. The two host Ned Asta and chef Sara Robbins have been at the Moosewood for 50 several years.

In those a long time, the Moosewood’s name grew not only from its meals and provider, but from the many cookbooks it encouraged. The first, The Moosewood Cookbook, was composed by primary collective member Mollie Katzen, She went on to a productive profession with other cookbooks, although the collective developed additional Moosewood publications of its very own.

Wilcox strategies a new cookbook for 2023, in recognition of the restaurant’s 50th anniversary. It will involve recipes, and tales about the Moosewood’s enduring impact on the “vegetarian life-style.”

“The reach and reception of the cookbooks have been amazing more than the several years,” Wilcox stated. “While some are out of print now, there is often desire and inquiries on social media for recipes, so we’d like to decide up the momentum again.”

And Wilcox is prepared to carry momentum to restaurant itself.

“I grew up in the Moosewood kitchen area. It is my residence,” she explained. “Taking ownership of the cafe is important to me as I have a legacy to uphold. We intend to choose the restaurant back again to its roots, restoring the initial values that created Moosewood special while also refreshing the menu and dining knowledge.”

Relevant: Syracuse’s most effective-acknowledged vegan café to start its initial out-of-city place

Don Cazentre writes for, and The Submit-Conventional. Arrive at him at [email protected], or adhere to him at, on Twitter or Fb.