Yellow Straw: Add some sunshine beach vibe in life
For our family, eating out normally meant having good quality non-vegetarian spread replete with starters, desserts that overshadowed the main course. The fruit juices and fruits were either a home affair or a quick grab at the fruit shops in the markets in North India. In Kolkata, this was not very popular till some time back. However, for a few years, a brand has increased its presence and it is probably the first in the fruit juice bar chain: the 'Yellow Straw'.
Juices: Valencia Orange (Rs 248), Skin Glow Straw (Rs 153); Salads: Premium Mix Fruit Salad (Rs 148), Sprouts Green Salad (Rs 134); Hot Beverages: Ayurvedic Kadha (Rs.190); Snacks: Veggie Garden Sandwich (Rs.124)
I ordered through an online app and was delighted to see the beautiful sassy packing. The juices came in reusable glass bottles. The salads and snacks were nicely packed in paper boxes. The straws were big ones made of paper and yellow in colour indeed. The neat yellow packing gives a very happy sunshine-filled beach vibe.
Like a kid, I opened the Valencia orange juice first. I was looking for cleanliness, taste and freshness as there is no preparation per se. The Valencia orange is named after the famed oranges in Valencia, Spain and are small, sweet oranges with bright yellow colour and a distinct flavour. This juice was authentic, but I could sense a bitterness that usually comes either from a fruit cut some time ago or if it is not very fresh. I have had much better tasting Valencia orange juices even in Kolkata, leave aside abroad.
The next bottle I opened was the Skin Glow Straw. The drink is a fusion of fresh cold-pressed apple, beet and carrot juices. I also tasted a punch of ginger, lemon with rock salt that made me very nostalgic. In my childhood, this kind of juice was freshly prepared at home. My husband also says that such a preparation (called Kanji) was very common in Punjab even in the villages. The 'Yellow Straw' people call it an invigorating 'ABC' detox diet. I am told it helps in anti-aging, reduces blemishes, aids digestion by flushing out metabolic toxins. This was an absolutely amazing juice drink that this juice bar makes.
Then I dug into the Premium Mix Fruit Salad. The salad had watermelon, banana, apple, kiwi and seasonal fruit (honeydew melon in my case) garnished with toasted chia seeds. We are very finicky about our fruits. They must be clean, spotless and fresh. Gladly surprised, I found that the salad was totally freshly cut with no spots and not even a speck of peel or anything. The chia seeds added a crunch and it is a sure thumbs up for the fruit lovers.
The next in line was the Sprouts Green Salad. The salad had the goodness of sprouted moong (green gram) and chana (Bengal gram). The freshness and the flavour of sprouted lentils were relieving. The two were mixed in a kachumbar (finely diced mixture) of lettuce, tomato, cucumber and onion garnished with some mixed seeds. It is tough to sprout at home and this was a quick fix and tasty as well.
Just for diversity, I ordered a sandwich: Veggies Garden Sandwich. It was a simple grilled sandwich made in brown bread with a filling of tomato, capsicum, cucumber and onion with mayonnaise and cheese. It was a simple, wholesome and homemade type only. I ended the meal with an Ayurvedic Kadha made of a concoction of mulethi, tulsi, cinnamon, ginger, lavang, turmeric, pippali, giloy and black pepper. It tasted like how a Kadha tastes but I am glad someone is doing the work of a caretaker in these trying times.
WHAT I LOVED
I loved that there was no guilt attached to the food in this order. Everything was healthy, fresh and natural. No oil, no spices and no chemicals! I particularly liked the skin glow straw and the salads. I am also happy to have gotten two glass bottles that I would use to store some spices later.
If you love fruits but are lazy or do not have time to buy, clean, peel, cut and squeeze, do not worry. Order from the 'Yellow Straw' and add some sunshine beach vibe to your life.
(The columnist is a food connoisseur who loves experimenting with culinary delights and a career bureaucrat in the IRS Income Tax)