Does anyone remember a time before green juice? The fresh fruit-and-vegetable blends-squeezed on hydraulic presses, packed with nutrients, and designed to balance PH and alkalize acidity in the body-now seem as ubiquitous as the iPhone or Lena Dunham. As the New York fashion collections draw near (on the heels of a rampant strain of the flu-thanks, winter), showgoers will be doing their best to fortify themselves against long days, late nights, and crowded venues. It seems that everyone has a favorite blend of choice: Vogue's market and accessories departments almost single-handedly keep the midtown juice bars at Free Foods and Green Symphony-located a stone's throw from the office-in business. Model-turned-street-style-photographer Hanneli Mustaparta credits her favorite at-home blend of veggies and fruits as her Fashion Week survival secret: "It helps me get enough nutrients and feel good about taking care of myself, not to mention piecing me back together after long flights," she says. Jewelry designer Monique Péan makes a habit of stopping by One Lucky Duck next to Milk Studios in Chelsea and front-row fixture Elettra Wiedemann usually has one green juice a day that she makes from her own recipe at home-kale, chard, lime, pear, romaine, ginger, and cucumber. "It gives me stable energy levels, and helps with immunity," she says.
With the offerings for bottled greens in Manhattan (and beyond) becoming increasingly vast and varied, the choices can seem overwhelming, so we took it upon ourselves to put them to a taste test and report back. See the slideshow above for our findings-garnered from one week spent in very close quarters with kale.
THE TASTE: With six pounds of kale packed into one little bottle, this juice tastes vegetable-y with some tangy apple sweetness. You will feel full-much like if you just ate a large plate of greens.
THE PRICE: $10 (prices vary by region)
THE CALORIES: 110
THE PACKAGING: BluePrint uses plastic bottles made of Polyethylene terephthalate (or PET #1), which doesn't leach and is highly recyclable. It's also light, which ultimately makes it easier to deliver with less fuel.
THE DELIVERY: BluePrint hand-delivers in New York City and Los Angeles, and offers FedEx overnight shipping to the rest of the country. To ensure juice remains fresh, the company will only release its product into real human hands.
THE EXTRAS: The infamous BluePrint cleanse (in which the company's Kale University blend is a linchpin) can be paired with a wellness package available at select Exhale spas across the country. With three fitness classes, one restorative therapy (like a massage), and a daily supply of juice on the menu, there's no excuse for those toxins to stick around.
THE BOTTOM LINE: Sometimes you've got to eat your vegetables before you can indulge in a cashew vanilla cinnamon agave milk.