The cold-pressed juice craze in New York is in full swing, but people are forgetting about its delicious, blended cousin: the smoothie. As temperatures (thankfully!) continue to rise, a fresh smoothie is the perfect complement to a stroll through Central Park on a warm day, or a post-jog boost.
Fortunately, for those who have maintained their allegiance to this wonderful beverage, there's no shortage of fresh and original smoothies throughout New York's five boroughs. Whether you're craving blueberries in the Bronx, or need your banana and peanut butter fix in Brooklyn, we've got you covered.
Queens: Fountain of Youth Juice Bar & Cafe (Queens Village)
217-93 Hempstead Ave
It's one thing that all the ingredients in Fountain of Youth's smoothies are organic or at the very least all-natural. It's another that upon entering the store, one is greeted with bright, lush foliage perfectly pairing with the refreshing and detoxing beverages that are being blended up. Fountain of Youth has a fine selection of cold-pressed juices in addition to their extensive smoothie offering. A crowd favorite is the Pink Stallion smoothie, which includes fresh strawberries and a whey protein boost to grow those muscles and, true to the store's name, help keep you young and vibrant.
Honorable Mention: Blue Cups (Woodside) – The Frozen Blue Cups smoothie, which combines the creaminess of almond milk with the lush, subtle sweetness of fresh blueberries, is a must.
Brooklyn: Punchline Juice Bar (Crown Heights)
701 Nostrand Ave.
You'll find this modest establishment along Nostrand Avenue, in an area of Brooklyn with Caribbean heritage and cuisine. Punchline's tropical concoctions and accompanying colorful shades are indicative of its island roots. They blend tropical fruit with ingredients such as sea moss (rich in vitamins and antioxidants) and linseed (which combats heart disease) for beverages both delicious and nutritious. But perhaps the most interesting? A blend called “Armageddon”, which is purported to increase a man's libido. Gentlemen, this may be one smoothie to sip before the workout.
Honorable Mention: Jo Juice (Bed-Stuy) – The Peanut Butter Jo will satisfy your sweet tooth like a milkshake, without sacrificing the strides you've made during those morning runs in Prospect Park.
The Bronx: Fresh Take Juice Bar (Unionport)
2245 Westchester Ave.
Aside from Fresh Take's top-notch smoothies, the greatest reason to head to this establishment is the story of how owner Eric Glisson brought it to life. Glisson was wrongly accused of a crime he did not commit and served 18 years in prison before a judge overturned the ruling and he was released in 2013. Finally, Glisson was able to have a fresh take on life. What better way to respond than by offering a fresh, healthy product in the neighborhood where he grew up? Excellent smoothies, but an even more refreshing story.
Honorable Mention: 100% Smoothies – Their watermelon-strawberry smoothie brings two traditional flavors together to form one unique, lip-smacking combination. Summertime in a cup.
Staten Island: Fab Cup (West Brighton)
605 Forest Ave.
“Island” living calls for smoothies year-round, no? You'll find the best on the island at Fab Cup, where they're jamming a smorgasbord of ingredients into their frosty fixes, but making it work. Though first and foremost a coffee shop, Fab Cup is equally skilled at mixing up top-notch smoothies. The Snug Harbor, which has almond milk, peanut butter, mixed berries, and spinach, is one of the most popular items on the menu. Or, go with the Pitaya Bowl (pictured), a smoothie/granola hybrid complete with blended dragon fruit, non-dairy milk and nuts. Aside from the smoothies, the strawberry acai bowl is a surefire way to get your day started off on the right foot.
Honorable Mention: Peri's Pearl Tea – Skip the bubble tea and go straight for the papaya smoothie. Now, close your eyes, put on some Bob Marley, and pull out that beach chair you've had stowed away all winter.
Manhattan: Green Juice Cafe (Washington Heights)
Though it isn't particularly close to Midtown Manhattan, it's worth the trek up to Washington Heights for one of these handcrafted meals-in-a-glass. The greatest aspect of Green Juice Cafe's smoothies is how substantial they are. The Sweet Buzz, which comes complete with peanut butter and espresso right in the glass, is a three-in-one: your breakfast, your coffee, and a darn delicious smoothie. If traditional fare is your route, they also have an extensive selection of coffee beverages and breakfast sandwiches.
Honorable Mention: Oasis Jimma Juice Bar (Harlem) – Oasis Jimma has tinkered with a green apple concoction and come up with an exquisite blend of sweet and sour with this icy, delicious beverage. We're surprised it took this long for someone to think of putting green apples in a smoothie, but we're glad the secret's finally out.