Picture this: After a Saturday morning run to the Union Square farmers market, you’re sitting outside at a fab people-watching cafe, soaking up the sun as you sip a Swiss chard-avocado smoothie and munch on a totally-good-for-you pop-tart (more on that later).
That may be what your next visit to Juice Generation looks like.
The New York City juice- and smoothie-bar just introduced a new, expanded menu and revealed it will open three new locations over the next three months—including its largest ever, and two that include outdoor seating.
We caught up with founder Eric Helms to fill you in on all the juicy details.
Juice Generation will open its first Union Square location on 18th Street, next to Paragon Sports, in May, and it will be the first location ever to have outdoor seating (many of its locations don’t even have room for you to stop and sip). Helms is also excited about the location’s proximity to his veggies. “Four of the purveyors we use can literally drop produce off to the store as they go to the market,” he says.
Then in June, the downtown flagship will open on Maiden Lane in the Financial District, right below SoulCycle and steps from other healthy spots like Fields Good Chicken. At more than 2,000 square feet, it’ll be the biggest store yet and will include ample seating inside and out. “We’ve done a lot of special things there,” Helms says. “It’s a little over the top.”
Finally, a Midtown East store at Lexington Avenue and 53rd Street will debut in July. That location will be more in keeping with company’s more petite juice bar layout and comes with a fun fact: It used to be a Jamba Juice.
Helms says they’re not stopping at just these new stores, either. They hope to roll out three more locations in the fall. “We look to end the year at 18 stores,” he says.
What to order
At all of them, the new menu will be front and center, and it includes lots of new superfoods to amp up your smoothie, including more dense greens like Swiss chard and collards (instead of just kale), cashew butter, and avocado for those who like to sub the healthy fat for banana. “We were just reacting to what people were asking us for,” Helms says.
They’re also adding new signature blends to their menu, including The Professional, which is packed with greens and wheatgrass instead of fruit, and meant to appeal to those with green juice PhDs.
Juice Generation’s bakery selection also got a major revamp. So where there used to just be a few varieties of muffins, you’ll now find vegan and gluten-free Matcha Baked Donuts, Coco + Almond Macaroons, and the aforementioned Acai Pop-T, which tastes like a delicious, healthy, grown-up version of the childhood favorite (seriously). “It’s the most popular bakery item we’ve launched ever,” Helms says. We could’ve predicted that one. —Lisa Elaine Held
For more information, visit www.juicegeneration.com
(Photos: Via Juice Generation, New bakery items, new juices, and the Cashew Butter Baby Smoothie and Acai Pop-T)