Jugo Fresh is a grown up juice bar in a serene space with soft, sanded reclaimed wood panels and white marble counters. It feels more like a salon than a health food store where customers come for cold pressed juices, sugar-free smoothies and energy boosting shots of extracts and spices. The motto of the place is “open for life” as in yours.
The man behind the concept is Matthew Sherman, a 35-year-old former basketball coach from Baltimore who earned a Masters from Barry University in sport and exercise psychology and worked as a holistic life coach. Growing up the youngest of four boys he ate everything especially triple cheese pizza and at one point weighed 360 pounds but has put that behind him after he adopted healthy eating habits.
Fruits and vegetables are pressed in a machine that breaks up the fibers with an angled rotating blade and then applies two tons of pressure to squeeze the resulting pulp into a micro fiber bag. The fiber-free nutrient-dense juice slowly drips out and has a shelf life of up to three days but most juices here are sold within 24 hours or less. Juices can be as simple as apple pie with apple juice, lemon, ginger and cinnamon or as complex as ya fui green with cucumber, romaine, spinach, dandelion greens, sunflower sprouts, parsley and sea salt.
Blended beverages include la comida with oatmeal, cashew milk, goji berries, cacao nibs, hemp and coconut, carrot with coconut water and cashew milk and the Sherman with coconut pureed with banana, kale, spirulina and agave. The mangostina is a blend of mango, coconut, almond milk, cinnamon and carob. One can add bee pollen, flax meal, maca powder or ground chlorella to any drink. The best selling shot is the saca lo (get rid of it) best kicked back when you feel a cold coming on with cayenne, citrus, ginger, lemon and turmeric. Vegan tastings include kale ceviche, beet tartare, quinoa bowls with miso dressing and figs with cacao crisps and lemon cashew cream.
Linda Bladholm is a Miami food writer and personal chef who blogs at FoodIndiaCook.com.