The myth of the juicer is strong, casting its own siren song: no more $10 bottles of green juice! Press your own blends! Live healthy! So easy to clean!
In actuality, most household electric juicers are loud, frustrating to clean and include a baffling array of removable components that ultimately double the amount of countertop space the device requires to function properly. For the price — a high-quality juicer is typically upwards of $450 — it’s reasonable to expect a better-designed product that actually addresses the needs of the user. Sadly, instead of being the invigorating, healthy habit it should be, making fresh juice at home is a chore that requires an entire roll of paper towels.
Luckily, the Swiss engineers behind the Novis Vita Juicer realized it doesn’t have to be this way. By stripping the machine of unwanted external attachments, buckets and complicated power controls, this innovative juicer combines multiple juicing functions into one seamless device, all housed in a sleek, minimal casing.
Most juicers require an unsightly pulp container to catch refuse, but this machine is a self-contained unit. The lower half of the machine houses the powerful motor and other inner workings, while the top one-third is a fully insulated juicing compartment where the user interacts with the device. This section contains the circular, centrifugal sieve where produce is processed. Due to the insulated design, excess pulp is contained within the spinning wheel and doesn’t need to be expelled into an external bucket. This top third is also still within the machine, meaning there isn’t a visible, clear plastic tub displaying the juicing process. No one wants to see how the sausage is made, you know?
To clean the machine, remove the lid and simply pull out the sieve. Run it under the faucet for a quick rinse mid-juicing, or throw the whole thing in the dishwasher when you’re finished. This sieve is one of only five pieces for the entire juicer. The others include a small triangular scrape for smoothies (to create a thicker texture by incorporating limited, processed pulp), a secondary ring-shaped filter for citrus pressing, the citrus press and the lid. The machine is also calibrated to the perfect speed for juicing, meaning there’s only one button: and on/off switch.
The interface design isn’t the only innovation. Through a single gesture, the Novis switches from a centrifugal juicer to a traditional citrus press. Much like you would remove the sieve for cleaning, the lid can be swapped out for a traditional handheld citrus press, allowing you to move between leafy greens (centrifugal) and oranges (citrus press) without any mess. In total, the Novis offers four unique functions: centrifugal juicing, citrus press, smoothies and the brand’s trademarked “vitatec,” which is a specialized centrifugal setting to maximize vitamin extraction.
The design is so seamless and well-conceived that it won the Red Dot design award in 2014. The Novis even includes shock-absorbing feet to reduce noise and prevent the machine from shaking and skidding on the counter during use. It’s adorably reminiscent of a mini R2-D2, jiggling with excitement.
The machine really does seem to take on a personality of its own. As someone who has tried other juicers, it’s never been…well, fun. But I can’t lie: The Novis is a downright pleasure to use, and maybe I’m crazy, but the subtle wiggle of the machine put a smile on my face as I shoved Swiss chard and parsley stems down the tube.
What about the juice produced? Simply sublime — the freshest I’ve ever had, but it probably tasted doubly delicious because I didn’t create a Dexter-like mess while making it. I could control the pulp content to my exact preference, and making green juice was refreshingly uncomplicated because I could easily switch from greens and apples to lemons and other tart citrus (for flavor balance). The machine powered through the thickest kale stems without a hitch. I had to rinse the sieve twice during the process, but after juicing two enormous bunches of kale ($6 total from the farmers’ market), I ended up with nearly quadruple the amount of green juice I would normally pay $10 for at the local grocery. I washed the sieve, lid and citrus press by hand, and after air-drying, they looked brand-new. I quickly passed a damp paper towel through the inner compartment of the machine (mostly to appease my OCD), which remained clean without risking any juice seeping down into the belly of the motor.
At $500, the Novis is undoubtedly an investment, but if you’re in the market for a juicer, this is without question the unit I would recommend. It has brains and brawn, and as someone who works at a design firm and dates an architect, it’s my only household appliance that’s garnered beauty compliments. Tough luck, stand mixer.
Novis Juicer, $500, available in multiple colors.