So, you think you're a serious juicer? (I'm referring to fruit and vegetable juicing, and not the steroid kind that gets you suspended for 50 games in Major League Baseball, obviously.) Have you taken a juice vacation? Because that's the new standard for real juicers.
Hotels from New York State's Catskills to Southern California now offer long and short "juice vacations." A good pre-Labor Day example for anyone who's been going too heavy on the burgers recently: the one-day Bikini Jumpstart Juice Package at Santa Monica's Shore Hotel.
Real juicers, here are more trends to stay on top of:
It's the best new thing to talk about around the water cooler (besides this season of Homeland). Several companies are promoting liquid diets (the juice kind) as the best new form of team building. According to the New York Times, group juice cleansing is thriving at Merrill Lynch and Citigroup offices (some Citigroup cafeterias make it super easy by offering the BluePrintCleanse). In fact, Eric Helms, founder of Cooler Cleanse with Salma Hayek, says almost a third of his business now comes from corporate cleanse groups. Still, some work cleansers say their next group activity should be an alcoholic happy hour.
The Hottest Words in Juicing
Here are two words that are going to make your juice-loving friends pay attention: "cold-pressed." The fast-growing new chain Juice Press is among the many places that now offer cold-pressed ("raw," unpasteurized) juices, which reportedly have a higher nutrient content than plain old juicer juice. Special machines extract the juice at a slower speed, reducing the fruit and veggies into a pulp, which supposedly helps extract nutritional enzymes. New York Yankees fans, take note: First baseman Mark Teixeira is one of the Juice Press owners.
Coffee Goes Juice-y
First, Starbucks sold wine in its coffee shops. Now, it's juice time. Starbucks's first retail juice store, Evolution Fresh, opened in Bellevue, Washington, in March. The store boasts an on-tap juice wall, where you can blend your own signature drink (let's say greens, pineapple and blueberry, with a cayenne add-in). Now, there's also an outpost in Seattle and they're opening a 260,000-square-foot factory in California to produce their juices. And yes, they sell Starbucks coffee at Evolution Fresh.
At Manhattan's City Bakery, Maury Rubin makes my absolute favorite chocolate chip cookies. Now at his brand-new Birdbath Juice bar, he offers an antidote for all those cookies I've eaten in my life, in some very interesting flavors. Clearly, Rubin has been shopping the farmers market: Choices include fennel, Kirby cucumber and cold-pressed(!!) sugarcane; organic sweet potato, orange and cilantro; and foamy pineapple, cucumber and purslane. What's more, the menu includes nutritional notes: "The fennel in this drink provides half a day's potassium and a full day's vitamin C."
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