Hey there juice lovers! We have a fresh and juicy interview with owner and founder of Rock’n Juice in Los Angeles, Voula Tsiboukas. She tells us about how her passion for juice led her from a small town in Greece to sunny Southern California, and what her love of rock and roll has to do with it.
List du Jour: You grew up on an organic farm in Greece. What flavors and foods of your childhood gave inspiration to your signature juices?
Voula Tsiboukas: Growing up on an organic farm translated to me as a lot of planting, harvesting and cooking. I can still smell my “home” like I am there right this moment. I can smell and feel the taste of the strawberries that I had pick from our fields which were turned into delicious smoothies, pies, jams and other goodies. Words cannot describe the taste and feelings fresh fruit and veggies give me. When cherries were in season and added, the dish then became a master piece — a culinary art that still makes my mouth water. Strawberries, cherries, apples, apricots, pears and so many other fruits, vegetables and herbs were the base of our daily nutrition. The inspiration came from the experience that is well saved inside me, when I want to wake up and recreate a memory, or when I miss a member of my family, I create a bowl, when I need a bust a move and take on the day, I create a new shot and juice.
LdJ: Who are the people that inspire you most and how did that bring you to where you are today?
Voula: This is the “Question” that makes me feel proud and blessed as there are three people that inspire me to be who I am day:
1. Like most of the children on planet my mother Sophia (translation in Greek means wisdom) is my first, strongest wiser one. She taught me that the greatest tool of all is our heart, when your heart shows you the love use your brain and hands to achieve it. Be kind and respectful and one day you will harvest your fruits.
2. My great Father Antonis, completes the image of my mother, his passion, love and hard work in our farm is an example to me that working hard for something that you love makes your fruits taste better.
3. Last but never least my brilliant golden heart Uncle Alexandros — he moved from Greece in the beginning of ‘70s and has created an empire of restaurants and surrounds himself with love.
LdJ: How did your transition from small town in Greece to big city of Los Angeles happen? How did juice come into the story?
Voula: The story of mine in LA began with 3 letters….E.A.T which are the initials of my partner, cousin and best friend, Efthemios Alexander Tsiboukas. Without him nothing would have happened. He knew my lifestyle and he also knows the restaurant business very, very well, so after observing his businesses within the LA area and watching them expand and not having a healthy dining option—we started Rock’N Juice.
“Rock music and juicing is my food, so I combined my two passions together to create Rock’N Juice.”
LdJ: Rock music and pop culture are interesting influences for your juices. What music inspires your flavor combinations? How did you come up with the idea for Rock’n Juice?
Voula: If I had to describe myself in 3 words I would say: music, smell, taste. I can’t taste without music, I can’t hear without taste, I can’t listen smell with taste. I need to have all three most of the times to be complete and myself. Rock music and juicing is my food, so I combined my two passions together to create Rock’N Juice. Each menu item was carefully named and executed to the best of my ability. I’m constantly adding specials and thinking of new items to have fun with. We like to create one-off’s for special events including Coachella, and rockstar birthdays, etc.
LdJ: Açai bowls, smoothies and protein shakes are on your menu along with juice. What are some of your favorites?
Voula: I really love the whole menu, one of the good things of being a juice bar owner is that you can create a menu that you like and introduce the flavor combos to your customers. Creating the bowls, shakes, juices and smoothies takes a lot of science from mixing different ingredients and experimenting with different flavor profiles.
But if I HAD to name my favorites of the menu I would say:
Backstage for the Acai bowls with a kick of cayenne, Gig smoothie for a great green breakfast, and Beet It juice.
LdJ: What are some of your juicing must-haves?
Voula: The Harmony green juice and Jive lemonade as both of these are packed with nutrients and energy to get me through the day.
Beet It is the juiciest and has so much flavor without being too sweet.
Greenbrosia for a “Let food by thy medicine and medicine be thy food” juice.
List du Jour: Thank you so much for this juicy interview Voula! Keep on rock’n the juice!
Rock’n Juice 3730 Pacific Coast Highway, #102, Torrance, CA 90505