Morristown has scores of quality dining options, but neither a steaming , nor sound appealing in the middle of a heat wave. So this week, "Morristown Munchies" tried something different–an ice cold smoothie.
With loud music pumping and a menu that's the same from West Coast to East, at least one notable chain has built a successful national business around the smoothie. In Morristown, we have our own independent smoothie shop with an almost identical name, .
Once inside, however, Jungle Juice bears little resemblance to Jamba Juice, the national chain. No yellow shirts. No confusing menus. Just a basic menu above the counter, a specials whiteboard off to the side, a tray of cookies and a friendly employee behind the counter. Oh, and stuffed monkeys and ivy hanging from the front window–in keeping with the jungle theme.
Several smoothies and milkshakes caught my eye, including the orange dreamsicle, pina colada and Oreo dream. But the girl behind the counter recommended the Jungle original, a mix of pineapple juice, strawberries, banana, coconut juice and raspberry sherbet.
"I love the hint of coconut," she said. "It's like a strawberry pina colada." Sold.
She made the smoothie in less than two minutes. A small stainless steel machine dispensed pineapple juice into the blender. A fresh banana, a handful of strawberries and some coconut juice were added, along with several ice cubes and the sherbet.
A few more seconds and the drink was blended, poured into a small styrofoam cup and handed to me.
Jungle Juice has a couple tables inside, as well as one metal table outside on Morris Street. I took the table outside, but not for long. The medium-sized smoothie went down quickly–perhaps not as thick as what one would get from the national chain. But it was refreshing, and it held true to the strawberry colada claim. I love the coconut, and would probably order the pina colada smoothie next time around in order to get more of the coconut juice.
For $4.55, I know I could make the smoothie myself much cheaper. But that's the case with any smoothie shop, and coffee shops, too. We're there for convenience, not cost.
Jungle Juice also sells cookies, three for $1.25. I took one of each, chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin and white chocolate macadamia. All were soft and chewy, even the next day. My favorite was the white chocolate macadamia, even though it could have used a few more nuts. Though the cookies are a little smaller than what one may get at a cookie shop in the mall, they're still a good buy. I enjoyed them without feeling I had been ripped off (which is how I usually feel when I give in to temptation and pick up a cookie from the mall).
So, if you're looking to an icy blended drink to cool you off this hot weekend, Jungle Juice's smoothies are ideal. And go ahead, give into the temptation for a cookie.