Last week I attended the grand reopening of the all-new and fabulous Uptown Juice Bar (14 E. 125th St., between Madison and Fifth avenues). It had been three months since it shut its doors just down the street to move to the new location. The crowd was giddy with relief for the eatery’s return.
With one deep breath, you could smell the newness of the location. The modern, airy, inviting gathering space we knew so well got a little upgrade that reminded us that the people of Uptown Juice Bar still know good hospitality and good food.
I can recall many visits to the Uptown Juice Bar and the myriad people from all walks of life that congregated over a fresh fruit juice or a savory or sweet little something to eat. No matter the time of year, the old Uptown Juice Bar was humming along. This has not changed.
In addition to the staple of diverse and satisfying dishes that are available in hot steam trays, priced by the pound, guests sampled the raw food of Sunfired Foods owner and chef Dr. Aris LaTham, Ph.D. He prepared hors d’oeuvres of sliced cucumber topped with a sesame cake, dehydrated kale chips seasoned with house-made rosemary and soy cheese topped with beet puree. For dessert, the good doctor prepared a raw banana and cherry jam pie with an almond and walnut crust.
I really enjoyed all of it, plus the humus and the soy cheese sandwiches, too. Guests were amazed by the textures, flavors and tastes created with raw food. Each dish packed rich freshness and attention to producing quality unique tastes that Harlem has come to love.
Seventeen-year owner David Simmons continued to be excited by the neighbors, friends and customers who came to celebrate the restaurant’s return. “It’s here for everybody to come and grow with me,” he said. And from the looks of the event, Uptown Juice Bar will be a Harlem institution for another 17 years and beyond.
Uptown Juice Bar’s hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday to Wednesday. And for the duration of the summer, Thursday through Saturday they will be open until 11 p.m.! That means there is no excuse to get late-night junk food now. The Juice Bar has you covered.