No beverage – not even a frosty cold beer – epitomizes summer as perfectly as a glass of cold watermelon juice. Sweet, crisp, and refreshing as all get-out, it’s the perfect drink to cool you down and make you remember that, despite the 100+ degree temperatures, summer isn’t so bad after all. New York is chockablock with spots to pick up the sweet stuff. Here are five of the best bets.
The Juice Press offers excellent straight-forward watermelon juice at three locations in the East Village and Midtown West. The watermelon is cold-pressed with no additives for a clean, sweet drink that also acts as a cleanser.
At ABC Elixer Bar, watermelon is blended with lavender and fennel for a complex drink that almost makes you forget you just spent $11 on a glass of juice. Get this one to stay – the Elixer Bar space is serene and rustic, managing to perfectly embody the exotic shabby chic aesthetic of ABC Carpet & Home while never feeling like it’s inside a store.
The watermelon juice at Cafe Gitane may not contain any special additives, but doesn’t everything taste even more delicious while watching a parade of New York’s most beautiful people? Accompany your juice and model-gawking with the deceptively simple avocado toast – a slice of seven-grain bread topped with mashed avocado, chili flakes, and generous squirts of lemon juice and olive oil.
Fatty ‘Cue stays true to its Asian street food roots with a watermelon juice laced with kaffir lime, perfect for those who prefer their summer beverages with a hint of tart. The juice plays beautifully with Fatty ‘Cue’s decadent barbecue menu, effortlessly cutting the richness of dishes like the pulled lamb shoulder.
It’s Lafayette Espresso Bar + Marketplace, however, that offers what may be the city’s greatest watermelon juice. Blended with basil, the juice here comes out blood red, slightly spicy, and altogether intoxicating. It’s just the fuel you need for a shopping stroll around Soho.