The smoothest of smoothies
Looking for an alternative to a hot caffeine-filled drink this summer?
[Our winner] Feijoa Funk at Tank Juice Bar, Westfield Riccarton, 129 Riccarton Rd - 4 stars
Tempted by berry and tropical options, it was the citrus Feijoa Funk that ticked all the boxes. Empowered with feijoa, bananas, apple and frozen yoghurt, it delivered a fresh and zingy kick, but, all too soon, the straw was sucking up air. Refreshing indeed, and 98 per cent fat-free.
Berry smoothie at Lucianos Espresso Bar, 76 Moorhouse Ave, Addington - 3 stars
Lucianos' smoothies offer caffeine haters respite. Despite its reputation as a good place for great coffee, the café's baristas can brew a satisfying smoothie, too. Served in a tall milkshake glass, the berry smoothie can be made with icecream or yoghurt, and the result will keep you going without the buzz.
Mango Machismo at Pure Pulp, The Colombo, 363 Colombo St - 4 stars
On a cracking hot day, the toughest decision is between a "No Moo" smoothie or a delectable dairy one. Dairy-free options include cranberry, raspberry, watermelon and fresh mint, but the Mango Machismo - with Moo - did not disappoint. Yoghurt, mango, banana and lime, with a ginger kick, combined to make a great mid-shop reviver.
Berries and Cream at The Lotus Heart, 363 St Asaph St - 3 stars
A healthy smoothie or a super-food one? This vegetarian restaurant offers a huge range of options, but the Berries and Cream was the pick on the day. The perky pink mixture of berries, cashew and almond cream, dates and natural vanilla was easy and pleasant to sip, and just a bit gritty.
Berry smoothies at Berry Farm & Cafe, 434 Sawyers Arms Rd - 3.5 stars
In its 43rd year, this seasonal berry haven often draws people off the beaten track. One reason is its refreshing berry smoothie, blended with yoghurt, bananas and natural juices. With plenty of pips there's no denying the multitude of berries that were sacrificed to create this sweet drink, but we were not complaining.