Organic Pharmer is shaking up the juice bar scene with a collaborative clean-food concept that brings together experts from varied backgrounds—a physician, a holistic pharmacist, two celebrity chefs, and an architectural designer. Together they’re serving up nutritionally-balanced, beyond-delicious, beautifully packaged food and juices.
The juice bar and restaurant opened just three months ago in Rye Brook, Westchester, and it will soon make its menu available to New Yorkers via a partnership with Revolve Fitness and delivery within New York City. You will want to set the table in anticipation.
How did all these players come together?
The idea started with renowned functional medicine physician Susan Blum, MD, who regularly creates personalized food plans for her patients at her Blum Center for Health. “Food is so foundational to what I do,” she says. Dr. Blum hired a chef to teach her patients how to cook for themselves, but when many expressed interest in having the food provided to them, she also began making meals in house. “I couldn’t keep up with making it fast enough for the patients.”
So she teamed up with her mother-in-law, architectural designer Carol Blum, and integrated pharmacist Michael Altman to find a way to bring her nutrition standards to both her patients and the wider population. They then brought on healthy chef dream team Lee and Darleen Gross, a married couple who cooked for Gwyneth Paltrow before opening and working at the popular M Cafe in Los Angeles.
The juice and food menu
“What differentiates Organic Pharmer is that we work hand-in-hand with a functional medicine doctor, so first of all there are nutritional parameters we’re working within,” Lee Gross explains. Those include guidelines for fat, protein, and calories plus avoiding popular allergens like gluten and soy. It’s also all vegan, free of refined sugar, and organic. “Nothing can go on the menu unless the nutrition is cleared by me,” Dr. Blum says.
Juice plays the starring role, and Dr. Blum worked with Darleen to ensure that each bottle came with health-fortifying properties, using botanical infusions. The Immunition juice blend, for example, comes with immune system-strengthening elderberry and elderflower, while the detox-friendly Green Light comes with digestion-boosting ginger and liver-supporting nettles.
And while Dr. Blum has spoken out against juice cleansing in the past, she worked with the Grosses to design cleanses she could feel good about recommending as an MD. “People want cleanses, and I wanted to offer something that was really functionally healthy,” she says. That means including detoxifying herbs but also 30–35 grams of protein a day (for comparison, popular national juice brands can hover around 13 grams per day), since she says the liver needs protein in order to excrete toxins it mobilizes during the process.
The Grosses have also created a stellar food menu that complements the juice offerings, from leafy salads like a Kale & Cauliflower Caesar to raw salads like the Green Apple and Ocean Greens, plus flavor-packed sides like Quinoa Sushi and Hummus with Hempseed Z’aatar that is honestly to die for (or at least fight for the last serving of).
While you can stop by its home base in Rye Brook if you’re in the area, Organic Pharmer will officially hit Manhattan on July 28, with the launch of its partnership with Revolve. Riders will be able to pre-order food and juices and then have their cooler bags waiting for them post sweat session, and the studio will also stock an Organic Pharmer hydrating “Sport” beverage.
And come Labor Day, the store will launch limited delivery to some areas of the city. Start spreading good karma now, and maybe your neighborhood will be one of them. —Lisa Elaine Held
For more information, visit www.organicpharmer.com