NEW MILFORD — If vegetarian dishes made with fresh organic ingredients are your cup of tea, you may want to visit The LOVE Epicuria cafe at The Green Spot.

The small cafe opened in August in The White House on the garden center property in Northville. The owner/chef is Aldina Zullo and she is passionate about serving healthy, nutritious food.

“My whole life I always had a weight issue,” Zullo said. “I was yo-yo dieting and then my son got me eating organic vegetarian meals. I lost 100 pounds and wanted to share the healthy diet I’d discovered with others.”

Zullo and a partner opened a vegetarian-organic restaurant in Sedona, Ariz. But the partnership soured and the restaurant closed. Fast forward a year and Zullo found herself in her hometown of New Milford doing vegetarian catering.

“My friend Sharon Kaufman, of Village Center for The Arts, invited me to have a food booth at her event this summer, Paint The People,” Zullo said. “Chris Bruzzi, who owns The Green Spot organic garden center, bought one of my portobello burgers and asked if I had a place locally. He offered me the space in Northville. I opened here in August.”

Bruzzi said he and his wife enjoyed the portobello burgers and the smoothies they got from her booth at Paint the People.

“I chatted with her and then called her later,” Bruzzi said. “We talked about the space I had and I offered it to her. Her food was very good and I thought it would be a perfect match for the cafe.”

The LOVE Epicuria cafe offers smoothies, juices, salads and sandwiches. Outdoor seating on the patio is along the East River. Zullo also does catering from an off-site kitchen.

Homemade sauces, specialty flour, and organic herbs and vegetables comprise Zullo’s dishes. For the meat-eaters, she offers locally grown free-range organic chicken and grass-fed organic beef. From Philly cheese chicken panini to roast beef sandwiches, she has something to please most palettes.

Her Italian dishes include eggplant Parmesan, fettuccine Aldini, and lasagna , manicotti and stuffed shells. Vegan options and smoothies and fresh-squeezed juices complement the menu. All produce is organic, GMO free.

“I grew up cooking alongside of my Italian grandmother,” Zullo said. “She taught me how to bake and cook. As I got older, I worked at my parent’s delicatessen, Old Time Deli. We’d have a line out the door.”

The LOVE Epicuria cafe, 354 Litchfield Road, New Milford, is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. To arrange for catering, call 475-529-5971.