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Fresh Lavendar - Waltham/Watertown/Brighton?

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thegirlwholovestoeat Apr 6, 2010 05:48 AM

My friend has requested a lavender infused lemonade for her bridal shower this weekend, and I am in charge of making it. Any idea on where I can find fresh lavender - I work in Waltham and live in Brighton. I was thinking of trying Russo's, but don't have much time left for trouble shooting!

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  1. PinchOfSalt RE: thegirlwholovestoeat Apr 6, 2010 06:07 AM

    Yesterday Russo's had lavender plants suitable for an herb garden (along with rosemary, sage, etc.) but not cut sprigs of lavender. The plants will definitely give you what you want. However they may be more expensive than cut lavender. I can't say for sure that I have ever seen sprigs of lavender for sale anywhere - certainly not a Russo's. Here are some ideas:

    - See if someplace like the Cambridge Formaggio's or your local Whole Foods would be willing to get some especially for you. Do this TODAY in case they need to work this with their distributor.

    - Quick, get some dried lavender and experiment. My cooking instinct tells me that if you use about 1/3 as much dried as fresh, and then strain after infusing, you should get a similar flavor.

    Good luck!

    3 Replies
    1. re: PinchOfSalt
      t
      thegirlwholovestoeat RE: PinchOfSalt Apr 6, 2010 06:46 AM

      Thanks very much, this is great help. I'll call Formaggio Kitchen and if all else fails will go down the dry route - I hadn't even thought of that!

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      Formaggio Kitchen
      244 Huron Ave, Cambridge, MA 02138

      1. re: PinchOfSalt
        s
        silver queen RE: PinchOfSalt Apr 6, 2010 09:03 AM

        BTW, the plants at Russo's are $3.49 each or 4 for $12. You'd probably get 2-3 3-inch sprigs from each one, if that's enough.

        1. re: silver queen
          t
          thegirlwholovestoeat RE: silver queen Apr 6, 2010 10:53 AM

          The people at Formaggio were super nice and helpful but can't get it until Friday. Since I am afraid of waiting for the last minute (need the drink ready on Saturday) I am going to grab the lavender from Russo's and give it a try, I think I will only need about 4 plants and $12 is worth relieving some stress!

      2. c
        cpingenot RE: thegirlwholovestoeat Apr 6, 2010 06:48 AM

        Whew- unfortunately it's really the wrong time for lavender buds in this hemisphere.
        I think that P.o.S's instinct is good for the dried stuff- but it would be nice to have something as a garnish- I'd recommend talking to the florist at Formaggio as well, as I bet they'd be mindful of the chemicals on the flowers if you were going to ingest them.
        I would also suggest trying to talk to a fancy bartender like the people at Cragie on Main or Drink- they have experience with sourcing garnishes and the flavor ingredients

        1. StriperGuy RE: thegirlwholovestoeat Apr 6, 2010 07:29 AM

          I pay attention to these things, and have not seen fresh lavender anywhere. Even in season you are more likely to see it in someones yard then the market.

          My SO got some very nice dried at Polcari's in the North End, and I think the Harvest Coop in Central Square or Witches Weeds in Salem would have it dried as well.

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          Polcari's Restaurant
          309 Montvale Ave, Woburn, MA 01801

          1. Allstonian RE: thegirlwholovestoeat Apr 6, 2010 07:47 AM

            I saw potted lavender yesterday, in front of a florist's shop as I was passing on the bus - I think it was the Kabloom in Coolidge Corner. It seemed to be in bud, not fully in flower yet. I'll second those who have said that while you can find potted lavender for the garden around town, and it's not that hard to find dried lavender, I've never seen bunches of cut fresh lavender.

            Here's a random thought - try calling the Garden at the Cellar and seeing if they have any leads. The chef's family runs the Herb Lyceum out in Groton.

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