Faceoff: Pittsburgh Juice Company vs Salúd Juicery

I’m going to have a tough time selling this as a fight. The owners of these two cold-pressed juice stops would have a hard time hurting a caterpillar. (Plus, they are ~35 minutes away from each other; not quite competition.)

Pittsburgh Juice Company

Let’s start with Lawrenceville resident PJC.

Naomi runs this little shop, and my first introduction to her was a second-hand story on how this girl had worked in the Tech Shop for months to hand-create all the decorations and signs for her new juice bar.

I stopped in at the tail-end of Yelp’s “Meet the Owners” event, and helped empty some of the sample jugs of juice.

Yum!

Honestly, it’s hard to make fresh juice not taste good. On my way out, I bought something I can’t remember the name of, but it was a tapioca-like pudding (may have actually been tapioca for all I know) that was super chocolate-y (cacao powder, I assume) and some sweet cherry-colored fruits that could have been goji berries.

I am clearly the best food reviewer in the world. The Washington Post won’t leave me alone.

Yup, just Googled goji berries. Definitely was them.

My point is: she has four food items on her menu along with her staple juices (juice menu here), and they are all gluten-free (and I think dairy-free), including the spring rolls! I would go back just for those little snack items.

I was surprised the juice menu was so small, but I learned she bottles all the juices on-site since they only last for a few days before losing their nutritive value. The bigger the menu, the more wasted juice, I assume. But she does cover the basics! I predict her Berry Watermelon juice sells out daily when if it gets blazing hot outside.

Ginny and Seth of Salúd Juicery, Sewickley

Ginny and Seth of Salúd Juicery, Sewickley

Which brings me to….Salúd!

Located on the main drag in Sewickley, this small little shop is beautifully decorated, has ridiculously friendly people behind the counter, and I’d choose one of their smoothies over a milkshake or McFlurry any day of the week. Disclaimer: I’m friends with one of the owners. But so is everyone who ever buys a smoothie or juice or açaí bowl from him.

Seth and Ginny run this little place, and you can read more of their story here. Salud’s smoothies is what sets it apart from your typical juice bar, and it’s a delicious difference. Because they’re blended fresh for each order, there’s no wasted foodstuffs.

Even the leftover ‘sludge’ from the pressed ginger root gets eaten by one of the zealous staff members. (She didn’t get even a little bit sick all of this winter, she’ll tell you. Eat more ginger sludge, folks.)

I have to confess, I’ve only actually tried three drinks from here because I can’t bring myself to drink anything but the Racer’s Edge, which is a chocolate peanut butter concoction with, of course, almond milk! My favorite part of the drink is eating the decorative slivers of chocolate at the end of it.

You don’t know what you’re missing.

Oh! And you have to try the Solar Ray shot! It has lemon, ginger, cayenne, and turmeric and it’s actually GOOD. And they give you apple slices as chasers, which you’ll need for the wheatgrass or  shots. Blegh.

Who came up with the idea of humans eating drinking grass?

(Both shops offer detox juice programs, and both wisely positioned themselves near yoga studios.)

Naomi, Seth, and Ginny are all driven to improve their local communities and keep the benefits of fresh fruits and vegetables alive and in our bodies. My taste buds think they’re doing a fabulous job.

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