The best time to acclimate little palates to the inherent sweetness of vegetables? As early as possible, says Edward Balassanian. He’s a father of two boys and the founder of Vital Juice, a Ballard-based bottled juice maker that also squeezes a line of fruit and vegetable blends for kids from organic produce that’s free of fillers, binders, concentrates, powders, and frozen purees — or sugar, agave or stevia.
“You don’t need sugar or sweeteners if you grow up thinking vegetables taste good,” says Balassanian, whose “microjuicery” produces winning Vital Kids combos like Green Gorilla (cucumber, apple, kale, spinach, lemon, almonds, dates, and vanilla bean) and Mrs. Beet (orange, carrot, beet, almonds, dates, and vanilla bean).
Vital Juice started in 2013 with the concept of pressing juice within the community, which served to minimize transit time and eliminate the need for stabilizers and preservatives. The company also is juicing in New York, with San Francisco and Los Angeles to follow. Find it locally at Metropolitan Market, Whole Foods, Caffé Vita, and online at vitaljuice.com.