When everything from vinegars to mayonnaise to chutney is being made in-house and down the block, why should the orange juice come from across the country? Enter micro-juicers, the micro-brewers of the juice world. D.C. is seeing more outlets catering to the trend of "juicing" — and we're not just talking Sweetgreen's sweetpress line.
The brainchild of a graphics designer, South Block Cafe in Clarendon is a local micro-juicer specializing in cold-pressed juices, a technique that minimizes the loss of nutrients and flavors by using a slow blade and two tons of pressure to squeeze the juices out of ingredients. The cafe has juices with names like Detox (plenty of greens, cucumber, green apple, parsley, and lemon) and Caveman Cold-Brew (cold-brew coffee, organic raw cashews, raw agave, and other ingredients) to appeal to many tastes. Even mixing cold-pressed juice and alcohol is an option since Arlington's Bracket Room — from Chris Bukowski of The Bachelor fame — has Chris' Hangover Cure, which uses South Block's Detox juice and vodka to create a healthier cocktail. The cafe also has in-house made shooters (think 5 Hour Energy); the truly dedicated can try out a three-day cleansing package for $150.
Hawthorne Homemade in Cathedral Heights prepares its own freshly made juices and creates cleansing packages for those deeper into the trend. Hawthorne sources from farmers in the region to source a variety of local ingredients to create its juices and dishes. And H Street is in on the action as well. In a store with Afro-centric knick knacks and holistic vitamin selections, Khepra's Raw Food Juice Bar mixes fasting, juicing, and its raw food ethos to offer customers a different culinary experience. Khepra's juices are blended using lots of veggies and fruits, and the restaurant offers up raw food sides along with the juice. However, if less is more, Khepra's has fasting instructions and how to include juice in a 3-5-7 day (or even longer) fast.
South Block, Hawthorne, and Khepra's aren't the only players in town — local farmers' markets have been showcasing other juice entrepreneurs, too. And like the mushrooming of micro-brewers, expect more juicing guys to jump into the game.
· South Block Cafe [Official Site]
· Hawthorne's Homemade [Official Site]
· Khepra's [Official Site]
[Photo: George Perkins/Eater.com]