The Best Places to Go for Fresh Juice

June 15, 2012 5:33 PM EDT | By Staff Writer
We're going way beyond Tropicana here. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Juicing, a word that (at least as it applies to fruits and vegetables) means exactly what it sounds like, is a health craze that's been around for quite some time. And rightfully so: the health benefits of eating raw, organic fruits and vegetables in their purest forms, with all their proteins and antioxidants in tact, trump even those of the lunchtime salad, which often comes drenched with too much fatty dressing. For those of you who are tired of jamming with Jamba, here are the three best juice joints in all of New York City.

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1. Miss Lily's - SoHo, Manhattan

I came for the jerk corn and stayed for the juice. This Jamaican joint blends up all of the pleasant, fruity standards-- our favorite of which is the Harry Fontabella, a smooth and welcome respite for the lactose intolerant among us, which combines rice milk, bananas, your choice of blueberries or strawberries, and granola. The Cococado reminds me of the avocado milkshakes my mom used to make us growing up, combining the sweetness of coconut with the natural fatty goodness of the ever-welcome avocado, finishing off the drink with lecithin.

But the real star of the joint is the more extreme Real V-8, a butt-kicking cocktail of caustically healthy ingredients that really, really doesn't mess around. One sip of this blend of kale, collard greens, cabbage, red onions, red pepper, tomato, lemon, ginger, garlic, apple cider vinegar, and (deep breath!) cayenne pepper, and you'll be in nirvana.

While your heart is racing, enjoy the selection of classic reggae music while you drink your way through your lunch break.

2. Juice Generation - West Village, Manhattan

While there are multiple locations, nothing beats the tranquility of their West 4th Street little hideaway, which blasts their air conditioner at the absolute perfect strength for an instant respite from the summertime heat. And from the intoxicating smells of fresh pineapple, orange, and coconut that permeate the air here, you'll know you stepped into the right place.

The more extreme among us will enjoy their wheatgrass shot, which is supposed to be one of the best in the city and comes with an orange wedge chaser, the height of common courtesy. Since I don't take to paying to drink the sludge that comes out of lawnmowers, I go with the Citrus Super C, a perfectly pleasant blend of Hawaiian pineapple, grapefruit, orange, and mint. It may not be the healthiest juice out there-- a lot of you are probably scratching your head and wondering if you can get it with kale-- but there's something to be said about drinking a glass of juice that's totally enjoyable, without an aggressive offender in the mix.

Kick back, relax, and enjoy.

3. Urban Rustic - Williamsburg, Brooklyn

Oh, Urban Rustic, how do I love thee? Perfectly placed next to McCarren Park, which is Central Park for people with hangovers, this organic foods restaurant serves just about everything you could ever want at any given time. Special notice must be given to their juice selection: in particular, their Tears of the Clouds, which, at $5.50, clocks in as the cheapest juice on our spotlight. The juicers there combine apples, carrots, kale, and beets for a tasty, bright-red blend of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. It's the perfect median between the aggressively healthy flavor of vegetable juices and the friendly sweetness of fruit juices.

Take your drink to McCarren park, pet a friendly dog, and enjoy the free WiFi! You've been working hard all week! You deserve it!


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