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Juice: Recipes for Juicing, Cleansing and Living Well

The trio behind the cult LA-based Pressed Juicery institution offers a sneak peek at their book

by Yale Breslin in Food + Drink on 23 June 2014

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Hayden Slater, Carly de Castro and Hedi Gores are the founders of Pressed Juicery, an idea they had in 2010 that was grounded in a simple belief: in order to live well and feel healthy, people need to be armed with a set of tools that are simple, convenient and adaptable to the modern lifestyle. In their case, this set of tools came in the form of juicing. Four years later, their business has evolved and their team has managed to heighten what has become known as the "cold-pressed process." Taking their initiative one step further, the health and wellness trio will be launching their first book at the end of the July 2014, aptly titled Juice: Recipes for Juicing, Cleansing, and Living Well. We spoke with the trio about what differentiates their brand from an already cluttered market, cleansing and the difference between juicing and blending.

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Once considered a fringe practice of raw food zealots, juicing has gone mainstream. You guys have managed to decipher a niche within the market—so, what makes Pressed Juicery different?

Carly de Castro: We started Pressed Juicery with the intention of bringing a product that had changed all of our lives to as many people as possible. Honestly, much of the reason we have been successful is because we have always believed that it is about doing one thing really well and focusing our energy on our product and our flavors. Additionally, we've taken the product we created and tried to energize people about what it can do for their lives—what is possible if they take the small leap with us to drink our juice regularly. Part of the appeal of our company within the larger scope of the juice world has a lot to do with the fact that we invite our customers to make this about their lifestyles as a whole, and we have even started a larger conversation about all aspects of health and wellness and what it means to live the Pressed lifestyle on our website, The Chalkboard

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Your book’s mantra is to use juicing as a way to create a "healthier version of you." What are the biggest misconceptions about juicing?

CC: That it's about starvation—and that there is only one way to do it. We are not doctors or scientists, we just know one thing and it’s that drinking cold-pressed fruit and veggie juice can really only make you feel and look better. So that's what we want our customers to do: to drink juice however it fits best into their schedules and their hectic world. It is something to look forward to, whether you drink one every morning, pour one into your smoothie recipe, cleanse one day a week, once a year or never! It's about making an effort and doing something so simple that can have a big impact. 

There’s a big difference between incorporating juicing into one's life and doing a juice cleanse. What do you make of people who do a quick juice cleanse as a way to re-boot?

Hayden Slater: We are all for it—as long as you check with your doctor first. You know, our whole point is this: our bodies and our tastebuds are trained to crave what we are used to. Everyone falls off the wagon, no one is perfect and we are all works in progress. And when we feel like we need to reset, we cleanse for two to three days and immediately notice that our cravings change. It's pretty remarkable. Instead of a cupcake for dessert you find yourself craving fresh fruit. Of course, everything in moderation is our preference when it comes to cleansing and people should do what they can handle.

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How come you decided to put out a book? What do you want people to take away from it?

CC: We really wanted people everywhere to share the love of juicing with us and to get our recipes out to people who can't drink our juices or don't have access in general to fresh pressed juice. We also felt strongly about sharing a little of our personal stories and why we started Pressed Juicery and we wanted the opportunity to talk about all of the mentors who have inspired us. The book is really a natural extension of the brand and it sheds some light on who we are. 

There’s a section dedicated to the different between juicing and blending. Can you tell me a little bit about this?

CC: Juicing and blending are different—you're right—but first and foremost we really wanted to make a point of saying that we love blending too, and we think both practices should be a part of people's lives. Simply put, juicing removed the fiber from produce, rendering the juice a combination of vitamins and minerals that don't have to work hard to be digested. Blending is really no different than pureeing - you get the fiber and the bulk of the fruit and veggie. Often blended drinks are more filling to the stomach, and you can add powders and supplements that make them more of a complete meal. The body has to do more work to digest a smoothie (still less than a regular meal where you are chewing) than it does a juice. 

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What did you learn about both yourselves as entrepreneurs and friends while putting together this book?

CC: The process further solidified what we already have learned on this journey the past four years—that our weaknesses and strengths compliment one another's and that the best ideas often seem like the craziest at the time. We each add something distinct to Pressed and it was fun to see that reinforced during this process.

The three of you have been in business since 2010—how has the business model changed and evolved over the last four years?

HS: We are constantly evolving. We never could have imagined in our wildest dreams that Pressed Juicery would have grown to the size it has and that it would have become a part of so many people's lives. Our model has not really changed because our mission has remained the same and that’s to get the juice in as many hands as possible while retaining the highest quality and best taste in the industry. Our hopes are to continue to grow and reach more people. And our promise has always been: live well without compromise.

"Juice: Recipes for Juicing, Cleansing, and Living Well" is available for pre-order from Amazon for $15 and will release on 22 July 2014.

Book images courtesy of Ten Speed Press, all others courtesy of Pressed Juicery

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