Hey, there’s someone new to the area I would like you to meet. Her name is Ruby. She’s got a long lifespan, a sleek design, weighs around 50 pounds, carries a sharp blade and can chew through a full-size carrot in less than three seconds. She moved to town in July and has taken up residence at New Moon Foods in Truckee. Ruby is a juicer and the star of Rya Kirby’s new juicing extravaganza.
Reaching far beyond a morning ritual of orange, apple or even cranberry, Kirby – along with fellow juicer Jonathan Van Der Deos, juice enthusiast and co-creator Sasha Galitzka, New Moon owner Billy Griffin, and his wife Danika – are offering a cheap, delicious way to fit in all your greens without having to chew through them. Take for instance one of the juice bar’s most popular drinks – the Electric Magpie. It’s a mélange of apple, orange, carrot, beet, celery and kale. At first blush it may seem like a strange combination, but Kirby notes that there is actually a lot of science to the art of juicing.
Kirby, a former owner of Reno’s beloved Pneumatic Diner, said that’s where her love of juicing came from.
‘A woman approached me and said she had taken a class in L.A. for $1,500 on juicing and she hadn’t made anything as good as what she tasted at the diner,’ Kirby said. ‘I realized that there is such a science to it; and most people just want something that tastes good.’
What many of us don’t realize is that a one-ounce shot of wheatgrass provides the nutritional value of two and a half pounds of vegetables. While the price for a one-ounce shot at New Moon runs $3, Kirby says, ‘I don’t know where you could get two and a half pounds of vegetables for three bucks.’ Kirby notes that there isn’t just the symbiotic relationship between vegetables that goes into juicing; for example, she says that between kale, carrots and beets a person will get just about every cancer-fighting, antioxidant ingredient their body could want. Even with that, you still have to make sure the flavors blend as well.
New Moon’s menu is diverse and unique, with half of the recipes brainstormed by New Moon staffers and the other half coming from tried-and-true recipes. All fruits and vegetables are organic, seasonal and sometimes a bit off the beaten path.
‘Someone just brought me in all these passion fruit. That was something new for me to try to incorporate, so we came up with a new drink,’ Kirby said. Some of the offerings to check out include the Mountain Melody (apple, kale, celery, cucumber and beet); the Donner Dunk (apple, cucumber, ginger and mint); or the Jingle Jangle Morning (carrot, apple, ginger and lime).
I had the chance to sample both the Electric Magpie and the Jingle Jangle Morning; both were refreshing and delicious.
For the time being, the juice bar is just that – offering juices and smoothies. With colder weather approaching, they will start offering hot drinks with an emphasis on organic teas. The long view includes plans for a full café and wine bar. Business has been steady, with a blend of locals and tourists alike, and there are already a few regular bar flies.
Delicious juices and smoothies aren’t the only way New Moon is contributing to a healthy and more sustainable lifestyle: leftover pulp from the fruits and vegetables is donated to Shaw Family Farms for composting. According to Kirby leftovers can run 50 to 100 pounds per week. ‘We also have these corn cups, which are supposed to be compostable. But, as we’ve recently found out, they are only compostable in a commercial setting – heated to 150 degrees taking over one month to decompose,’ she says. ‘I don’t know where a commercial composting operation is, so we’ve had to throw them away. It’s not perfect, but they are breaking down in the landfill, which is better. Plastic is permanent.’
Get your fix at the juice bar seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Juices and smoothies start at $3.50 and feature add-ins ranging from chocolate and peanut butter to garlic and Serrano chilies. For more information call 530-587-7426.
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