It’s been pretty muggy the past couple of days. The sort of humidity that reduces flat-ironed hair to frizz and requires multiple showers in a day. There’s only one way to beat this heat–crank up the A/C full blast, pull your hair up in a bun, and snack on an ice, cold treat!
Some people like to eat ice cream or sip iced coffee, but I’m more of a frozen fruit type of girl. Ice cream makes me really thirsty, and iced coffee doesn’t quite satiate my sweet tooth. Plus, frozen fruit is easier on the waistline (it’s swimsuit season!), but equally as tough on the heat. Frozen fruit is pretty self-explanatory–take some fresh fruit puree, sweeten it with some cane sugar if necessary, and serve in soft serve, popsicle or smoothie form. Here’s a list of some frozen fruit spots worth trekking 10 blocks in the heat for.
Chloe’s Soft Serve Fruit Co. (25 E. 17th St., between Broadway and 5th Ave.)
I can’t believe it took me two years to finally try Chloe’s Soft Serve Fruit Co. in Union Square. I think all the healthy advertising about how its soft serve was so healthy, dairy-free, gluten-free and vegan turned me off. I’m all for health, but not when it comes to soft serve–I want something closer to the real thing. Chloe’s banana soft serve comes pretty close. The dense swirls of sweet, creamy banana puree mimic the texture and flavors in an ice cream soft serve quite convincingly. (Ruoxi, a soft serve purist, begs to differ. “This only makes you want the real thing!” is his take.) The other fruit flavors like blood orange, tangerine, raspberry and strawberry are more tart and sorbet-like in taste.
Juicy Lucy’s Juice Stand (72 E. 1st St., between 1st and 2nd Ave.)
Juicy Lucy’s is literally a hole-in-the-wall juice stand that’s really easy to miss. But it would be a shame to overlook the reasonably priced fresh pressed juices and smoothies that are being made in this tiny little place. Its flashy next-door neighbor Juice Press nearly threatens its survival, but it manages to hold its own against its corporate competitor. I personally don’t think Juice Press is very good, and the customer service is so lacking, so heading a couple steps over to Juicy Lucy’s is a no-brainer for me. I’m a big fan of their frozen smoothies–the strawberry and banana smoothie is one of the best!
Liquiteria (170 2nd Ave., at 11th St.)
This is the best juice shop in the city, and unfortunately one of the most expensive. I’ve spent probably a good 25% of my disposable income on buying these incredible, high margin juices. One bottle of pressed juice can cost $8.50. That’s literally more than the cost of a meal at some places. But if you think about what goes into a juice, basically a whole salad, then the pricing doesn’t seem too unreasonable. I usually get the All Greens juice with apple, or the Beets Me juice. Liquiteria’s green juice is the best I’ve had in the city–the proportions of the different green vegetable ingredients are just right, and it doesn’t have little chunks of kale leaves or celery foam floating around offensively. For something that’s a little more filling, I’ll get the Mean Green smoothie, an amazing blend of kale, spinach, pineapple, mango, banana and fresh pineapple juice.
courtesy of timeout.com
People’s Pops (various locations, High Line, Chelsea Market, 118 1st Ave. at 7th St. in East Village)
During the summer months, I always get a hankering for a popsicle, but buying a pack of 10 from the grocery store is kind of embarrassing. Sort of like going to Olive Garden in a city with Il Buco or Locanda Verde. Luckily, People’s Pops sells popsicles in artisanal fruit flavor blends such as strawberry rhubarb, raspberry basil and peach blueberry so that you can indulge your childhood cravings in a more refined way. People’s Pops stays true to its mission of showcasing “the best local fruit we can get our hands on.” You can literally taste chunks of fresh fruit and see the berry seeds in your popsicle.