Populated by actors, models, and personal trainers, Los Angeles is the land of the body beautiful. With this in mind, it shouldn’t be surprising that even vices are crafted with a health slant. Detox and retox with the beverages spiked with all the goodness one would find in health food stores. Oh yeah, and alcohol.
The Spike: Kombucha
The Spot: Local Kitchen + Wine Bar, Santa Monica
You can’t get much healthier than the Giardino Verde cocktail layered with pineapple juice, kale juice, and agave (in the form of tequila). It’s also crowned with that formidable health food fad, kombucha, a fermented tea that is said to boost energy and aid digestion. Thanks to the bright, sour kombucha the cocktail is imbued with an effervescence without the addition of soda.
The Spike: Activated charcoal
The Spot: EP/LP, West Hollywood
Yes you heard right: Charcoal. This refreshing gin sour, created by Adam Nystrom to complement Chef Louis Tikaram’s Southeast Asian cuisine, gets a pinch of house-made activated coconut husk charcoal. It not only imbues the cocktail with a striking “black of night” hue, but promises to flush out toxins and prevent hangovers.
The Spike: Baby food
The Spot: Georgie, Beverly Hills
Cocktails made with Farmers’ Market-fresh juices are de rigeur in the Southland. But Brian Van Flandern, cocktail creator for Georgie and The Garden Bar in the Montage Beverly Hills, wanted to go one step further by using Gerber’s Peach Baby Food. It doesn’t contain preservatives, additives, or artificial coloring. This liquid hat tip to restaurant owner Geoffrey Zakarian’s buddy Rande Gerber (who makes the drink’s Casamigos Tequila too) has a concentrated kick of peach flavor without a cloying sweetness.
The Spike: Matcha
The Spot: Big Bar, Los Feliz
At this cozy bar, which also is a favorite bartender hangout, the classic hangover cure Ramos Gin Fizz is made all the more “healthy” with genuine matcha powder for an antioxidant-rich dessert cocktail that actually tastes like its garnish: A green tea Kit Kat.
The Spike: Pressed juices
The Spot: Sawyer, Silver Lake
Angelenos love their fresh-pressed juices, whether for cleansing or as a snack before yoga. And to also fit them into dinnertime, Sawyer restaurant collaborated with Clover Juice to create fresh-pressed juice cocktails for its guests. Each juice blend is purported to offer a host of health benefits. So for glowing skin, for example, order the refreshing carrot/ginger cocktail which mixes in Russian Standard vodka, ginger, lime, carrot juice, turmeric, and soda.
The Spike: Pot
The Spot: Gracias Madre, West Hollywood
There isn’t any actual weed in these cocktails (for now…we’ll see what happens when the new legalization laws kick in). But this vegan Mexican restaurant’s barman Jason Eisner still wanted to impart medicinal benefits to his cocktails. He has laced three cockatils with CBD oil, the legal part of cannabis that’s sold in health food stores and has been used to help with everything from anxiety to inflammation. Even though CBD doesn’t give you the same psychotropic high that pot does, it still leaves you feeling super mellow. That Sour T-iesel comes garnished with a hemp leaf shaped dusting of green matcha tea powder on top.