With the fast growing trend of juice bars in the East Village, it can be hard to decide which one to try for your juice or smoothie fix. While each option varies in cost and variety, these three offer some of the best quality and value.
Since 1996, this open window hotspot has developed a loyal following for its fresh juices and smoothies. The large menu can be somewhat overwhelming, but there is no such thing here as a poor choice. Bottled juices and coconut water can be found in a refrigerator next to the counter for grab n’ go convenience, but each item can also be made fresh to order. Choices vary according to personal taste, but favorites here range from the refreshing Grasshopper–fresh apple, pear, pineapple, wheatgrass and mint–to the slightly spicy “Bee Sting”–strawberry, pineapple, ginger, lemon, almond milk and bee pollen. For a creamy, decadent treat, try the Bulldozer, made with banana, peanut butter, soy milk and chocolate whey protein.
Tip: Order smoothies with almond milk instead of soy–it’s healthier and tastes better.
Address: 170 Second Ave (at 11th)
Hours of Operation: Mon-Fri 7am-9pm; Sat, Sun 8am-9pm
This mini-chain now has six locations in New York City, including two in the East Village alone. Known for its focus on juice cleanses and raw food, The Juice Press sells premium juices, for a premium price. For those who are willing to shell out $10 on a drink, the cold-pressed juices and made-to-order smoothies are packed with flavor and health benefits. While the selection may vary each day, favorites at this health-conscious hotspot include the entry-level Doctor Green Juice–apple, pineapple, ginger, lemon, and kale–and the cool “Fountain of Youth”–raspberry, strawberry, blueberry, banana, hemp protein, agave, and coconut water.
Tip: Try the “fountain of youth” with no agave. The fruit is sweet enough without it.
Address: 201 E 10th St (between 1st and 2nd)
Hours of Operation: Daily 8am to midnight
Despite its popularity, the items offered at this small East Village outpost are pretty average. Made with regular or soy milk and sweetened with honey, the smoothies are refreshing, but they lack great flavor. Juice is a better option here, as each is made to order with no added sugar. Still, the lower prices do not make up for the difference in quality between Juicy Lucy and other juice bars like Liquiteria.
Tip: Keep it simple, the green and plain fruit juices are the best choices.
Address: 85 Ave A (between 5th and 6th)
Hours of Operation: Daily 8am-11pm