Roses festoon the walls. Wisteria and vines pour down from above. You’ve never seen a flower shop as immersive as Poppyseed Rye in Ballston. And it doesn’t stop there. Though florist Akeda Maerdan is hard at work beneath the faux blooms creating very real bouquets and baskets, chef Alex Buc and his assembly line are just as focused on crafting sandwiches.
According to owner Scott Parker, also the mind behind a raft of Arlington businesses including Barley Mac and Don Tito, his team was inspired by similar pairings of food and flowers in New York City. He was already plotting ways to work with Buc, who made his name with Jetties sandwich shops in DC. “This seemed like the perfect opportunity,” says Parker.
Subway has given the term “sandwich artist” snarky associations, but it would be wrong to identify the craft with which the breads from Lyon Bakery are piled with toppings as anything less than artistry. Admire the panache of the shaved smoked turkey piled atop sweet roasted red peppers and tangy pepper mustard; the meat and arugula are held in place with slabs of funky brie.
To really bring a taste of spring to your lunch (or dinner), don’t miss the strawberry lemonade, balanced almost acrobatically between tart and sugary. And once your sandwich is gone, bring home a bouquet to remind yourself that winter will indeed be over soon—but until then, there is Poppyseed Rye.
818 N. Quincy St., Ste. 102, Arlington