Hidden gem: Juicy Brew

The secret’s out. I’m a glutton for vegan food. There, I said it (don’t tell Chuggy Bear).

So when a vegan/vegetarian-friendly coffee shop by the name of Juicy Brew started following me on Instagram, I was intrigued. Initially because the bulk of my posts are not vegan-friendly in the least bit: Gooey mounds of mac and cheese, slabs of prime rib and burly burgers abound. What lured me through the doors of this hidden cafe were the daily specials.

Inside Hale Pawaa, the medical building on Beretania at Keeaumoku, Juicy Brew is not your standard lobby bodega.

Inside Hale Pawaa, the medical building on Beretania at Keeaumoku, Juicy Brew is not your standard lobby bodega.

Sisters Jennifer and Christina Hee focus on preparing healthy and wholesome "juice, brew, and chew," aka cold-pressed juice, great coffee, unique tea and delicious food.

Specials change every few days and often sell out the day they're introduced. The cool case is always stocked with grab-and-go essentials. You can ask to heat up your meal.

Specials change every few days and often sell out the day they’re introduced. The cool case is always stocked with grab-and-go essentials. You can ask to heat up your meal.

The breakfast burrito ($7.50) changes often, but consistently includes a healthy dose of legumes, sweet potatoes, kale, peppers and side of organic salsa verde. This is one cut in half.

The breakfast burrito ($7.50) changes often, but normally includes a healthy dose of legumes, sweet potatoes, kale, peppers and side of organic salsa verde. This is one cut in half.

I’m a burrito lover (don’t get any funny ideas) so I tend to order one if it’s on the menu. Here, it’s small but mighty and will sustain me for more than a few hours. The homemade salsa verde is also habit-forming.

The Moroccan Couscous ($6.75) is a hearty grain salad with tender Israeli couscous, sweet potato, dried apricot, carrot, garlic and a long list of seasonings.

The Moroccan Couscous ($6.75) is a hearty grain salad made with tender Israeli couscous, sweet potato, dried apricot, carrot, garlic and a long list of seasonings.

I appreciate the amount of work that goes into vegan food. It’s more than just “grass,” because chefs have to make their food taste good without the natural flavors animal proteins provide. All of the ingredients that go into each dish are listed on Juicy Brew’s menu, so conscious eaters are well aware of what they’re consuming.

The Chaya Frittata ($5.75) is made with organic eggs, pepper jack cheese, chaya leaf, Hungarian wax peppers and uku billion seasonings.

The Chaya Frittata ($5.75) is made with organic eggs, pepper jack cheese, chaya leaf, Hungarian wax peppers and uku billion seasonings.

Juicy Brew does a lot of Indian-style curries and no two are the same. Because Jennifer uses whatever she can get her hands on ingredient-wise, they tend to dictate much of the menu and the base for the curries. They aren’t as rich as they are packed full of tender vegetables, beans and aromatics.

The Indian style curry ($6.75) also includes a load of superfoods like mooth bean, black eyed peas, sweet potatoes, chaya leaf and the entire shelf of an Indian spice rack.

The Indian style curry ($6.75) includes a load of superfoods like mooth beans, black eyed peas, sweet potatoes, chaya leaf and the entire shelf of an Indian spice rack.

If you’re looking for a mid-morning pick-me-up, snag one of Christina’s butter mochi squares or a lilikoi muffin. They’re moist and brimming with flavor. Perfect for accompanying the coffee or tea you’ll also want to get.

Blueberry butter mochi ($3.50) makes the perfect midday snack with iced tea.

Blueberry butter mochi ($3.50) makes the perfect midday snack with iced tea.

Natually, the sisters Hee are working on a second Juicy Brew location. That one will be in Kaimuki; it’s supposed to open soon.

Juicy-1Juicy Brew 
Hale Pawaa
1401 S. Beretania St.
Honolulu, HI 96814 
469-1991