Long the sidekick of solid meals, juice has upped its game in recent years, often serving as a quality brunch option in its own right. A single bottle fom a juice bar can provide the nutrients of literally pounds of fruits and vegetables, and juicing is purported to deliver everything from stronger bones to a glowing complexion (beat that, bubble tea). This doesn’t mean your taste buds need to suffer, though: from coolers to cleanses, these top juice bar spots found in neighborhoods across the Bay are as delicious as they are healthy. Your body will thank you.
SF’s best juice bar options
Owner Celinha Moreira wanted a space that reflected the diverse yet close-knit community she found in San Francisco; friends and family rallied around this vision, and Moreira opened Bebebar, a light-filled café and community shop off Dolores Park with menu items named after neighborhood children. Moreira herself is from Rio, so Bebebar serves up hometown favorites like papaya pulp and mango with agave. You won’t find bottles here, as all juice is made to order. Try the Nora, in which carrot, apple and lemon are amped up with plenty of fresh ginger. The Xander, an adult take on mint lemonade, is pure ambrosia on a hot day. Additional treats include acai bowls and pão de queijo, savory little clouds of cheese (bonus: they’re gluten free).
This Haight spot is ideal after a thrifting expedition or a stroll through Golden Gate park. The Haight Refresher—cucumber, pear, apple and ginger—is zingy and so palatable you’ll forget it’s good for you. If you’re looking for something veggie heavy, try the Green Zing, loaded with spinach, kale, celery, cucumber, green apple, cilantro and lemon. Bespoke cleanse packages start with a meeting to determine a plan based on your personal goals and sensitivities. You can also personalize your juice by mixing and matching ingredients for your own custom elixir. If the amiable owner is in, she’ll be happy to help you choose.
Juice Shop opened after co-owner Charlie Gulick found that a raw lifestyle was the only way to manage his rare liver condition; he soon recruited his wife and three brothers, creating a family business based on health and longevity. Outposts throughout the city offer raw, organic, cold pressed fluids to health nuts and dabblers alike. The classic Deep Green provides your five-a-day and then some with celery, cucumber, romaine, kale, spinach, lemon and parsley. For a thicker beverage, look no further than the 5 Seed, a mix of sunflower, hemp, chia, flax and pumpkin seeds blended with blue-green algae, strawberries, banana and raw almonds.
This East Bay shipping container-cum-juice spot may be hard to find, but it’s worth the search. Since July of 2015, Antidote has offered made-to-order juices in addition to bottled, hydraulic pressed options for the cold press connoisseur. Antidote’s cleanse is heartier than most; in addition to the standard tinctures, you’ll find sprouted almond milk and small batch bone broth. For a sweet refreshment on a hot day, the chia seed- and apple-spiked Chia Pet juice might be right up your alley. If you’re craving something solid to eat, try the chicken kale pesto sandwich, or the kale and romaine salad with Green Goddess dressing made from scratch.
It’s no coincidence that Green Surge is tucked next to a gym: these juices and smoothies are designed for the fitness buff. Fruits and veggies are sourced seasonally to offer maximum nutrition, creating an extensive and ever-changing menu. Offbeat ingredients like butter lettuce, bok choy and pichuberry are offered alongside fresh favorites such as apple and kale. Standbys such as carrot and orange juices may be less adventurous, but are no less fresh. Also on the menu: smoothies, a veritable orchard of nut milks, and one-, three- and five-day cleanse packages.
Elixiria’s near-constant crowd is a testament to the quality of its product. Veggies are locally sourced from the farmer’s market and cold pressed daily. The Almighty, which consists of kale, celery, lemon, sheep sorrel, red clover, burdock root and apple, is velvety and light yet substantial. Elixiria also offers day-long Power Cleanses (consisting of four detox shots and four Master Cleanser juices). The sunlit space offers respite in the middle of the hectic Financial District; you might just be tempted to stay for lunch.
Operating out of a weekend pop-up at Range, Happy Moose provides fresh juices in exciting combinations. Jalapeño and pineapple spice up kale and spinach in the Jala-piña Greens, while the heavenly Moon Milk features raw hemp hearts, blue green algae and chia seeds. All juices are packaged in sleek glass bottles, keeping the all-organic ingredients PBA-free. Bottles range in size from tincture to growler; cleanses also come in regular and mini sizes so you can customize your juicing experience to your lifestyle.
Sidewalk Juice serves out of unassuming storefronts in three San Francisco locations, but don’t be fooled by the lack of decor: this local hot spot boasts over 100 choices on its menu, including a make-your-own option for drink DIYers. The Bruce Lee, a one-two punch of double portions of spinach and kale paired with orange, apple and ample ginger, is satisfyingly spicy without being painful. The best bet for a Sunday morning? The Hangover, in which bubbly kombucha is mellowed by fresh coconut juice.
California mini-chain Project Juice serves up over three pounds of vegetable in each to-go bottle. The #Getyourgreens attributes its popularity to a balance of cilantro and aloe; for something more exotic, try the Black Magic, which gets its inky color—and super antioxidant powers—from activated coconut charcoal. Cleanses cater to juicer’s differing desires, whether it’s seasonal or low-sugar. If you’re not ready for a full-blown cleanse, Detox Companion Kits present a more moderate option: ten juices and ten Wellness Shots, to be consumed over the course of five days in addition to light meals.
The juice at Living Greens is organic, cold-pressed and served in cute reusable glass bottles—what more could you ask for? Fennel gives an earthy je-ne-sais quoi to The Skinny, a sweet-tart combo of apple and grapefruit. For a quick dose, try the Immunity Shot: cayenne, echinacea oil and oregano oil provide this tiny bottle with a punch of spice. Seasonal cleanses are organized by intensity, from Living Well (for newbies) to the fruit-free (read: intense) Living Green.