Metro, Food, Top Story

One In A Melon: Fresh, Focused Juice Store To Open In Chestnut Hill

A rainbow of colors sits nestled on cold shelves across New York City. Squat, skinny, and circular bottles are dressed with green labels that relay feel-good names in black, scribbled script. “Love At First Sight” stands in line with “Rocket Fuel,” their greenish hues contrasting with neighboring “Pink Punk”—all waiting to be purchased.

From soccer moms to Birkenstock-wearing, LA hipsters, the juice cleanse trend has taken major cities by storm. Though the cold-pressed craze began in blenders on the West Coast, Boston has started to embrace the turn towards health foods with juice bars replacing cupcake shops on streets all over the city. This summer, Chestnut Hill plans to join the city’s big squeeze with the opening of Juice Press, a store specializing in raw and organic juices, smoothies, and vegan food products.

Though the trend has sparked many different pressed juice chain stores, Marcus Antebi, the CEO and founder of Juice Press, notes that his vision maintains an integrity that other expanding companies can’t compete with.

“We tackled all the hard things in this business and we managed to scale it and replicate it over and over, not only without compromising quality but actually increasing quality across the many aspects of this business,” he said. “We have exponentially more product than anyone in the market and the game changer is our operation and overall consistency.”

Antebi first encountered the benefits of a plant-based diet after a career of competitive fighting during which the need to cut weight fast was physically taxing. He turned to superfoods, raw juices, and a lot of salads toward the end of his career to be able to maintain a sufficient diet for his intense training in a healthy way. Though now retired from competitive fighting, Antebi found his dissatisfaction with available diet options as a driver for the Juice Press concept.

“As a retired competitive fighter, I needed a place to eat most of my meals to continue my training at the level I once had,” Antebi said. “My diet consisted of a lot of juice and smoothies and a lot of salads. I was terribly disappointed with the commercial vegan food scene and that’s what prompted me to do my own thing.”

Along with a menu containing the extensive variety of cold pressed juices and smoothies that Juice Press is most known for that features flavors ranging from “Sweet Pea and Almond” to “Chocolate Raspberry Kiss,” the Chestnut Hill Juice Press will also offer vegan options, raw foods and desserts, a signature salad station, and hot soups.

All of the products at Juice Press, from Hummus Wraps to their “Cold Brewed Almond Latte,” are USDA certified organic and made without GMO’s or High Pressure Processing (HPP). This process, which involves using a high pressured water bath to preserve and sterilize food and juice, pasteurizes the product to leave the juice lacking beneficial nutritional value. Though these standards make the shelf life of Juice Press’ products significantly shorter than other similar items, and even more so than processed foods, Antebi is proud of his fresh-focused requirements.

“People are into eating really healthy more so than ever. Not fake health but real health,” he said. “We don’t have to explain pricing anymore. People want fresh and organically grown produce—and they want selection.”

The newfound draw to health foods and a green lifestyle has facilitated success for Antebi and Juice Press. Once a “tiny” but “exciting” single store according to Antebi, since 2010 Juice Press has grown to 30 locations spread out across New York and Connecticut. The Chestnut Hill store, which will be located at The Street along Boylston St., is Juice Press’ first Boston-area location.

“Juice Press, with its cold-pressed juices and ultra fresh, organic menu, is certainly a pioneer in the health space, and we are very excited to add it to our collection of over 40 boutiques and restaurants,” Allison Yee, the general manager of The Street, said.

Juice Press will open its location neighboring Legal Seafoods and Calypso St. Barth in the trendy shopping center, just minutes outside of the Boston city limits.

“Hail Boston!” Antebi said about this most recent expansion. “Boston is an awesome city and the beautiful part of my work is I can create a business in cities I want to spend time in. Boston is an obvious move in every way—there are many great locations in Boston and the Chestnut Hill location was really the one location that has the hallmark of a few of our best locations in NYC—we have greater ambition in Boston than just a single store.”

Boston is not the only location that Antebi has greater ambition in, however, as he joked about the future of Juice Press saying that he would stop once he reached 900 stores.

“I entered into this retail category at exactly the right moment, and sticking to all of my core nutrition and operational philosophies has made juice press the leader above all others.”

Featured Image Courtesy Of Juice Press

March 12, 2015