The second installment of Chritiques’ Wellness Week is all about Yoga+ Chicago, an event series which features a one hour vinyasa-style yoga class, followed by an ever-changing interactive and educational workshop with Chicago-area business owners and subject matter experts.
Yoga+ was started by two sisters, Natalie and Andrea Pavela, who both share a love for yoga, as well as Chicago. Thus far, classes with Yoga+ have involved yoga followed by a floral arranging workshop with Larkspur Floral, a pasta demo at Sepia, a tour of the Trunk Club headquarters, and a punch making class at the Punch House.
Recently, I attended an afternoon event with Yoga+ which involved a wonderful yoga class held at Design Cloud, a shared workspace and art gallery, which is home to a select community of designers, artists, and creative entrepreneurs, located in the West Loop neighborhood of Chicago.
The yoga class was taught workshop-style, which catered to every level of yogi. It was not only fun, but just challenging enough of a workout to prepare us for our post-yoga activity – juice tasting at Harvest Juicery.
The class was not only fantastic, but it was wonderful making new friends in the process.
Following our yoga class, we walked a few blocks to Harvest Juicery, also located in the West Loop. Owner Krissy Sciarra, who trained at the Culinary Institute of America, met with us and walked us through a complete tasting of all of Harvest Juicery’s cold-pressed juices, as well as its smoothies.
All of Harvest Juicery’s juices are cold-pressed, which ensures maximum retention of nutrients, and are either locally sourced or organic.
Among my favorite juices were the Beet Juice, with beet, orange, tumeric, and tarragon; the Green Juice #1, with spinach, kale, turnip greens, cucumbers, pear and lime; and the Pear Juice, with pear, pineapple, ginger, and thyme.
The menu at Harvest Juicery recommends juices based upon the time of day that they will be consumed, as well as the the benefits the consumer is looking for. Need an afternoon snack that will boost your metabolism? Try the Watermelon Juice with cayenne and basil. Want an immune booster to drink any time of day? Try the Carrot Juice with apple and ginger.
Even the smoothies at Harvest Juicery follow the same principles of using local and organic fruits and vegetables, and are thinner in consistency than typical smoothies. The Nutty Oat, with housemade almond milk, banana, almond butter, raw protein, oats, cocoa, and honey, was the most dessert like, while still being light. The “B” Power, with blueberries, banana, bee pollen, spinach, avocado, cinnamon, and almond milk, was a green smoothie which was satisfying with a touch of fruit. And the Citrus Smash, with orange, apple, pear, cucumber, goji berries, purified water, lemon zest, and basil, was extremely refreshing, especially after yoga.
Following the tasting, we then toured the Juicery and learned about how each juice is conceived and made, using the cold pressed method.
All juices are made on site at Harvest Juicery, and are bottled there, as well. Because the juices are cold pressed and unpasteurized, they are recommended to be consumed within 72 hours.
My experience with Yoga+ was excellent. Not only did I enjoy the yoga class itself, but the concept of combining it with an interesting activity is genius. Yoga+ is a perfect activity to do with friends, or to even attend alone in order to make new ones. I am looking forward to attending more Yoga+ workshops in the future, and I hope to see you there!