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Dr Juice | A moment for healthy eating before the festive onslaught

With the festive season just around the corner we're taking some time out to indulge in a healthy meal at Dr Juice's new outlet in Gzira

When you run a food magazine, November is a little bit like Christmas. Days are filled with turkey and all it’s alternatives, gingerbread, shortbread, Christmas pudding... and all that was just one week!

When there is a moment to spare between the craziness of styling photo shoots and juggling clients what I really need is something kind to my gut. Vegetables have been left to the wayside recently so where do you go to get an influx of greens?

Health food cafes are booming across Europe with fancy avocado toasts taking over many an Instagram news feed. Malta, however, has been slow on the uptake of this healthier lifestyle. Maybe it’s our love for nanna’s imqarrun or an affinity to anything fried but health food cafes are few and far between.

Dr Juice has been around for ages, satiating Malta’s sweet tooth along with the quest for a smaller waistline with fruity smoothies and juices. However as far as food goes they didn’t really do very much, a couple of wraps, a salad or two and some energy balls, all made beforehand and warmed up while you wait.

Things changed with their new outlet in Gzira. This feels like a proper health food cafe. When you walk in there are a couple of people on laptops, working and sipping on coffee or green juices. The menu is up on blackboards behind the bar and includes their usual range of juices and smoothies, offering something for everyone, from the classics to the healthier green versions and ones for the gym rats. They also have a brunch menu with options such as poached eggs, protein waffles with avocado ice cream and avocado toast with eggs or smoked salmon.

The lunch menu is a mix of healthy burgers, salads and noodle bowls with a number of gluten free, vegetarian and vegan options. I went for a superfood soba noodle bowl with wok-fried kale, edamame beans, hijki, sprouts on buckwheat noodles with a ginger and garlic sauce, a raw detox juice made with apples, spinach, carrots, avocado, lemon and celery, and on the side some falafel bites.

The noodles were warm and tasty with a good combination of ingredients and flavours, even if it was a little bit on the oily side. The falafel bites were deep-fried which is not my cup of tea. A purist recipe would fry these chickpea patties, however there are many healthier versions that bake them instead. Coming from a place that packages itself as a health food bar, I would have expected a little less oil.

Though the food was slightly on the oily side, this is a step in the right direction when it comes to health food cafes. Cosy and inviting interiors and plenty of ingredients that sooth your gut rather than destroy it. I hope this will inspire more places like this to open shop.

Rating

 ***

What I ate

Superfood soba noodle bowl

Falafel bites

Raw detox juice

Total: €17.45

Address: Triq il-Gzira, Gzira

Tel: 21341218

Opening hours: Daily from 7am – 10pm

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