toast of the town
SHAKING IT UP
RAWBRY owner brings fresh juice and vibe to downtown Reno.
WRITTEN BY BARBARA TWITCHELL
PHOTO BY CANDICE NYANDO
Brianna Bullentini is most definitely a mover and a shaker, in every sense of the word. And when she makes up her mind to do something, she doesn’t let anything stand in her way.
Case in point: her new business, RAWBRY, an edgy, cold-pressed-juice bar.
When the Galena High School alum first became interested in this healthful, natural juice, she was living in New York. A recent graduate of the prestigious Parsons School of Design, Bullentini was working for one of the foremost architectural design firms in the country.
One of her clients, a juice company, exposed her to the benefits of cold-pressed juice as well as the facets of the business. Inspired by what she learned, Bullentini ditched her high-powered designer job and exciting NY lifestyle and returned home to Reno to launch her fledgling business.
And neither the local food scene nor the downtown culture will ever be the same.
Although she says the cold-pressed-juice mania has not yet hit Reno, Bullentini is confident that our active, outdoorsy, health-conscious community is primed to embrace this healthful product.
“Cold-pressed means using high pressure to compact fruits and vegetables to extract the juice,” Bullentini says. “It’s a process that generates the highest amount of nutritional value and maintains maximum integrity of the enzymes and nutrients.”
Additionally, she explains that her juices are raw and unpasteurized because heat kills 50 percent or more of the food’s nutritional value. As a result, shelf life is short, but it also ensures that the product always is fresh.
She prides herself on being “100 percent honest and transparent,” using only the best fresh produce that is seasonal, locally sourced, and organic.
“It takes three pounds of produce to make each bottle of juice,” Bullentini adds. “Can you imagine sitting down and eating that much produce? You couldn’t do it. This juice is the best, easiest, most convenient way to consume that many nutrients.”
Although juice is definitely the star performer, RAWBRY features many other options, all vegan, including mylks (nut milks); infused waters; smoothies; kombucha (fermented tea); cold-brewed coffee; a variety of teas; and highly concentrated, nutrient-dense produce shots. It also offers one-, three-, or five-day cleanses that include consultation with the staff nutrition specialist.
Location, location, location
As important as the menu, according to Bullentini, is the extraordinary space that RAWBRY calls home. Its location in the historic 1933 art deco-style post office, designed by revered architect Frederic DeLongchamps, is a coup for which Bullentini justifiably can be proud.
Initially hired as the lead designer to oversee the vacant building’s transformation into retail and office space, Bullentini envisioned additional possibilities. She convinced the owners that the basement presented the perfect downtown venue for an urban marketplace. The Basement, as it is fittingly called, came to fruition with RAWBRY as its first tenant, followed by many others. Bullentini hand selected tenants that include Chomp, Kalifornia Jean Bar, Global Coffee, Sugar Love Chocolates, Botanicals Flower Bar, Beautiful Bearded Man barbershop, Pantry Products, Escape (a spinning and boxing studio), and more. She also helped woo downtown Reno’s first national retailer in 30 years: furniture and home décor store West Elm, which will occupy the building’s 12,000-square-foot first floor.
Bullentini’s unusual mix of careers may seem odd to some, but she calls it serendipitous.
“I just saw it as my three worlds coming together,” she says, “my interest in a healthy and active lifestyle, my love of designing and rebranding, and being able to create a business I’m passionate about.”
The 27-year-old, named Visionary of the Year (along with one of the building’s owners, Bernie Carter) by EDAWN this year, promises that this is just the beginning. Who could possibly doubt it?
Reno writer Barbara Twitchell was awed, amazed, and exhausted after spending an hour interviewing this dynamic young woman. If her energy level can be credited to RAWBRY’s products, we all need to become regular customers.
Summa Summa Summa Time Smoothie
(courtesy of Brianna Bullentini, owner, RAWBRY in Reno. Serves 1)
10 ounces coconut water
½ cup frozen blueberries
3 frozen strawberries
½ cup frozen raspberries
½ teaspoon bee pollen
½ teaspoon honey
Blend in high-powered blender, such as a Vitamix, until completely smooth, and enjoy thoroughly!