Three friends, one who happens to be a platinum-selling rapper, have opened a juice bar on Castle Hill Avenue.
Nyger Rollocks, Leo Galvez and David “Styles P” Styles, bonded over juice at a juice bar owned by Rollocks in Harlem.
Galvez and Styles were regulars, and quickly became obsessed with the blends of fruit and vegetables the Rollocks concocted. They soon learned the craft themselves, and the three decided to take their juice to Galvez’s home neighborhood in the Bronx.
The juice bar, called Juices for Life, has been open for about a month. Word of mouth has been spreading quickly through Castle Hill, partially thanks to Styles’ fame, but also thanks to its unique atmosphere.
Styles, a Yonkers native, went platinum with his group The LOX in 1998 and has released three solo albums, including one that went gold in 2002.
Juices for Life has exercise equipment along its back wall, plus an actual bar that customers are encouraged to sit and hang out at, as long as they’re drinking a juice.
There is no menu yet either, so customers are encouraged to take the owners’ and bartenders advice on what to get based on their preference and their ailment. Juices for Life’s owners stand by the healthful properties of their product.
“I was eating a lot of fast food, but Rollocks got me eating right,” Styles. “Our first goal is to get everyone a little more health conscious.”
They also plan to franchise in the not-too-distant future. Rollocks is a native of Trinidad, where making different kinds of juice blends is part of the culture.
He has lived in New York for the past 22 years. When a new customer comes in, his first question is usually more than just ‘what’ll it be?’
“First, I talk to them and ask if they have any sickness,” Rollocks said. “Then we make up a diet program from there.”
Castle Hill resident Kelvi Esquea works at the barbershop across the street from Juices for Life and has become a regular since it opened.
“I was 240 pounds before I started juicing,” he said between reps at the store’s pull up bars. “I’m down to 220. All their stuff is all natural, I used to just get chicken and rice, greasy food.”
All of Juices for Life’s ingredients come straight from the Hunts Point Market. Rollocks goes there to stock up every two days.
Galvez, 30, who was previously a boxing coach and owned a candy store, is the main connection to the neighborhood. He was a regular at Rollocks’ Harlem shop.
“Nyger used to let me help out,” Galvez said. “I just started reading about juicing, buying and reading juice books and I wanted to bring something healthy back into this community. I used to have to drive all the way to Harlem to a get a good juice.”