Juice Society owner Danielle Sobel invites us into her new, modern (and beautiful, might we add) cafe to talk the inspiration behind opening Juice Society and the big plans she has for the farm, Flycatcher, she recently purchased.
1. What was the inspiration behind starting Juice Society?
I grew up suffering from chronic eczema and migraines. It wasn’t until after college that I finally said, ‘I’m sick of feeling this way and taking pills every day’. I just knew there had to be another solution to how I was feeling. I started experimenting in the kitchen and slowly transitioning my diet. Juicing was, from the start, a staple in my day to day routine and was the foundation of my journey to this new lifestyle. I spent a year going finding out what works for my body – I was paleo, vegan, raw, gluten-free.. literally, I tried everything. I am a huge believer that every body is different and over time what our bodies require to feel great can change. I think that is an important part of wellness that we forget about – not to get so attached to a certain way of eating and rather eat the way that makes us feel our absolute best, physically and mentally! And for me that means balance and moderation.
2. How did your business grow from being an idea to a real business? Any tips for our readers who want to take their ideas to the next level?
During my time of experimenting in the kitchen, I decided to go back to school to become a health coach at the Institute of Integrated Nutrition (IIN). Shortly after starting IIN and after everyone I know asking me to help them on their own health journey, I knew I wanted to start Juice Society. When I finished IIN I moved from Houston to Austin with the sole intention of starting the brand. I spent a lot of time researching companies, not necessarily juice-related, but that carried a similar ethos and brand identity that I wanted JS to become. This really helped me solidify what I wanted our company to represent but it is honestly always a work in progress! My number 1 piece of advice is to talk to everyone and anyone about your idea, you never know where you will find inspiration, guidance and insight. Also, don’t get wrapped up in making things perfect before you “launch.” You need to get started & get real customer feedback in order to learn and improve on your product or brand!
3. When you walk into Juice Society it looks and feels like a spa. Was creating a calming and relaxing space an important part of the design plan?
Environment and experience are a huge part of what I wanted to curate for JS and the design of our space played heavily into that. It is also very much a representation of what I find aesthetically appealing and felt as though there was space in the market to introduce a new, modern juice cafe.
4. Other than juicing, what does your personal wellness routine look like?
This is actually a part of my life I am constantly working on! Funny I know, because I am so dedicated to promoting and sharing tools for a balanced lifestyle that well… sometimes I get a little unbalanced myself. As with any business owner, stress creeps into my life daily and so aside from my diet, I am constantly trying to find ways to keep stress and inflammation at bay. I take ashwaghanda, tulsi holy basil and turmeric every day as well as drink as much water as possible. My days lately start around 5-6AM and end around 1030/11 so I’ve been slacking on the workout front but I’m working on getting back into yoga and barre, my two favorite workouts! At the end of the day, I love reading and spending quality time with my two dogs and fiancé, both which keep me sane and grounded. Also, I’m kind of obsessed with skin care products so I love putting on a new face mask right before bed – it’s my mini spa even if it’s for just a few minutes!
5. You recently purchased a farm and immediately reached out to the Austin community for volunteers. How important is involving the community?
Community means everything to me, to JS and to Flycatcher (our farm). I would have never been able to build JS without the support of the Austin community so it only felt right to include them immediately when we purchased the farm. Connecting with and having the community involved in what we do whether it;s naming a smoothie, joining in on a run club or planting seeds, really lights me up and makes me excited about the potential for JS and Flycatcher.
6. What are your long term plans for the farm?
The possibilities are endless with this farm! It really is such a magical, peaceful place and I am excited to watch it transform. We are starting with fixing up the greenhouse to get seeds planted and produce growing. From there, I plan on doing some landscaping work to get the flow of the property ready for events. There are currently two small homes on the farm and I plan to add teepees and yurts as well as a small yoga room and spa area. I really envision this becoming a retreat and event space in addition to the farm. Think big farm to table dinners, weekend yoga and wellness retreats and more!
7. For our pregnant readers, what juices do you recommend drinking during pregnancy?
I would always consult with your doctor before drinking juices while pregnant as some doctors do not recommend it due to it being unpasteurized. That said, Root Down (beet, carrot, apple, ginger, celery, lemon) and The General (kale, cucumber, celery,romaine, lemon, dandelion greens, ginger, parsley, spinach) would be my two recommendations that pack a serious nutrient dense punch great for you and baby. They also both have ginger which helps with nausea, digestion and building your immune system. For those following their doctors orders, smoothies and bowls are both great options and available in our shop!
8. What’s next for Juice Society?
I plan to continue growing our menu options (think matcha lattes, avocado toast & salads!) as well as physically expand our reach. I’m hoping to open another shop by the end of 2016/ beginning of 2017. The goal is also to source as much of our produce from our farm and I can’t wait to get that up and going. We will be composting back at the farm as well so it will be exciting to see this come full circle. In the immediate future, look out for fun events such as our run clubs and Society Socials, a monthly curate cocktail party!
For more information on Danielle, Juice Society and Flycatcher, check out their Website and follow Juice Society and Flycatcher on Instagram. If you live in Austin and are interested in volunteering at the farm, sign up here.
Images via Juice Society Instagram and Kate Zimmerman.