Written by Nell Alk.
If there’s one thing I can’t get enough of, it’s fresh fruits and vegetables. But unlike processed and refined products (known to some as “frankenfoods”), which are repeatedly modified and rebranded as the latest and greatest, organic goods in their natural state rarely receive the ever-popular “new-and-improved” makeover campaign.
Yet Body & Eden, the most recent addition to Manhattan’s liquefied produce scene, actually has managed to new-and-improve the cold-pressed health juice. Impressively offering seasonal, local, sustainable, and organic concoctions jam-packed with superfoods (think spirulina and chlorella) and herbs, the real kicker is this: their suite of juice-like blends isn’t in fact juice. B&E’s attractive glass bottles (brilliantly, once emptied, you can return them for a 20% discount off your next order) are brimming with whole ingredients, which, because they aren’t strained, retain all their vitamins and nutrients. Perhaps most significantly, they retain their fiber. This “mass” means that they won’t send your blood sugar soaring. (Caloric content ranges from 20-60 calories per bottle.)
This mom-and-pop shop, or rather BFF-run business, soft-launched in February and is well positioned to assist sippers everywhere as swimsuit season approaches. But, more than that, the brand is about “…supporting and stabilizing the body so that it can do what it does, better.” So say the founders, Aubrey Levitt (based in LA) and Hillary Deppeler (based in NYC), anyway. The pair met in 2000 while studying at Boston University and dreamed up the idea for B&E roughly three years ago.
With a tagline like “Nourish yourself,” the twosome has a pristine standard to maintain, and so far so good. Of the four flavors I sampled, black current (“I Have Stamina”) was my favorite. Light and delicious, it’s a heaven-sent nectar that I highly recommend you try yesterday. This falls within their herbal elixirs category. They also offer green tonics, artisan tonics, and a newly introduced “exclusive line.” Fear not being overwhelmed, however—altogether their menu consists of a very manageable menu of 13 different drinks. Much like their modest philosophy (“support the body and its functions”), the team didn’t overcomplicate the selection, though more adventurous juicers have the option to build custom cocktails.
One point to keep in mind, this isn’t a strictly vegan operation, so some of the drinks contain honey and/or bee pollen. If you’re dedicated to consuming 100% compassionately, be sure to read the label before buying. Standard eight-ounce bottles range in price from $6-$12 and, to be clear, they’re intended as a supplement to your lifestyle, not a meal replacement. “The bottom line is, you only need a little bit of a lot of different things,” Levitt says. “You only need the essence of something. It’s not like you need a pound of black currents. You just need a little bit. They have amazing Vitamin C and antioxidant levels. That’s going to recharge your system.”