Thursday, September 12, 2013

Heirloom Shake from Purée Artisan Juice Bar and pizza from Mellow Mushroom

Heirloom Shake from Purée Artisan Juice Bar

Last weekend I made it to the recently opened DC location of Bethesda's Purée Artisan Juice Bar. Located inside MINT Health Club, at 1724 California Street NW, Purée Juice Bar occupies a sunny side corner of the gym entrance. You don't have to be a member to wander in for a 100% cold pressed, organic juice or a raw vegan nosh.

But I was interested in their smoothie offerings, which they call "Shakes." (They also call their friendly baristas, "Puristas.") I ordered the Heirloom Shake. The artfully-designed drink menu listed this particular shake at $9.75 and said it was good for glow and fiber. It certainly was a glowing orange color. What a beautiful drink! It contained carrot juice, ginger, coconut, and banana. Ginger was the dominant flavor and I swear it made my whole body hum.

Purée offers a host of cleanse packages. And, strangely, they promote bee pollen. (Which I had to google, the worried vegan that I am. Seems like an animal byproduct with allergen potential. So I won't be doing a shot of that. Must be a fitness thing.)

They have a to-go case and a shelf with cool vegan items, like Ape Man Food's Walnut Meat Tacos, Totally Rawganic desserts, and Gnosis chocolates. Also some dry brushes, vegan nail polishes and removers, and something called Cocoa Vegan Booty. (Must investigate.)

Mellow Mushroom pizza

Afterwards, my boyfriend and I hit the rooftop bar of Mellow Mushroom Adams Morgan, located at 2436 18th Street NW. A Southern chain, Mellow Mushroom is often a veg-friendly oasis when we travel in the South. 

Mellow Mushroom has many vegan options with nutritional info on their website. I especially love their build-your-own salads. Plus, the servers know what's up. When you order a pie with Daiya cheese, they offer not to brush the crust with butter or cover the pie with Parmesan.

Mega Veggie Specialty Pie

This nicely charred Mega Veggie pie (above) had red sauce, sun-dried tomatoes, spinach, green peppers, mushrooms, onions, black olives, Roma tomatoes, broccoli, banana peppers, artichoke hearts and crumbled tofu. And, boy, did it have Daiya. We ordered the small, 10" size but could only eat a few slices; it was that loaded. The pizza made excellent leftovers.

Mellow Mushroom also has a great beer list, with many local options. And three floors of seating. If you want to score the rooftop tables be prepared to hover. The only downside is the music. Sometimes it's awesome, often it's not. This time it was blaring 90's slacker rock. Quite a counterpoint to Purée's chill health club vibe.    
Mellow Mushroom, exterior night

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