One of the major perks to being an entrepreneur in Cleveland is the amount of relatively inexpensive real estate available. Over the years, residents have witnessed restaurants and shops pop up all over town, transforming once-empty spaces into thriving local ventures. Two of the most recent examples happen to be neighbors: Beet Jar Juice Bar and Cleveland Tea Revival in the Hingetown area of Ohio City. We stopped in to take a first look.
Beet Jar Juice Bar
Co-owners Joseph Joseph and Molly Pamela serve up an organic, raw and vegan menu that includes cold-pressed juices, nut milks, smoothies, sandwiches and desserts. The Hingetown residents, vegans themselves, also play together in the band Cereal Banter and say their inspiration for Beet Jar came from visiting great juice bars while on tour and feeling that Cleveland could do with something similar.
Their cozy store is stocked with an array of temptingly healthful selections. Most everything is made in-house from fresh produce that Joseph picks up each morning before the store opens.
Vibrantly colored juices such as Silver Apple, a combination of apples, beets, cucumber and ginger, and Seagreen Serenade, with kale, apples, celery, cucumber, lemons and parsley, draw the eye to the store's large refrigerator. Inside, you'll also find treats such as Pineapple-Coconut Cheeze Cake and Raw Chia Pudding. A chalkboard features daily specials like the Smokey Coconut Sandwich and Banana-Mango Smoothie.
Beet Jar is open 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays, though it's wise to get there early. Pamela says that once morning spin class lets out down the street, hungry students get first dibs.
1432 West 29th St., beetjar.com.
Cleveland Tea Revival
Cleveland natives Amber Pompeii and Mike George spent a few years in Seattle, where they developed an interest in tea. Pompeii had been working at a tea cafe and got George into it, too. They decided that a store devoted to certified organic tea was a niche they could fill in Cleveland and returned home to start their business.
Cleveland Tea Revival's urban space is full of interesting renovations, from tables made of fallen trees to a countertop made from an old door shellacked with vintage city maps. Almost all of the restoration work was done by Pompeii and George themselves, with the help of family and friends.
Copper tins line the store's back wall, filled with an array of black, green, white, oolong and pu-erh teas that range from mildly to highly caffeinated. Each tea comes with a detailed menu description, which the owners can walk you through if it all seems too overwhelming. Teas can be served to-go or in a pot, kept warm over a small candle flame. Tea is also sold by the ounce.
Cleveland Tea Revival's food menu features partnerships with several Cleveland Culinary Launch operations. Meringue Bake Shop provides goods such as banana-date muffins, snicker doodle cookies and Earl Grey tea biscuits. There's also a menu charmingly devoted to toast: Stone Oven Bakery bread topped with smashed avocado and sea salt, mashed banana or a selection of local Abby's Jam.
The store is open 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays.
1434 West 29th St., 216-795-5099, clevelandtearevival.com.
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