Picture your morning: You've arrived at the local farmers market planning to fill your bags with just-picked produce. It's warm out and you realize that all of those artful displays have made you hungry. Enter the Teebsie ice pop, a fruity, refreshing taste of what's in season that won't ruin your brunch appetite.
Julia Taylor-Brown's new line of handmade creations, which use fruit as the main ingredient, are available for $4 at the farmers markets in Century City on Thursdays, Bank of America downtown on Fridays and Melrose Place on Sundays. A fifth-generation Angeleno, Taylor-Brown works with ingredients from local farmers such as Laura Ramirez at J.J.'s Lone Daughter Ranch in Redlands to formulate her vibrant combinations.
Currently, she's offering more than 20 flavors that rotate weekly. There is a punchy basil-grapefruit and a lip-staining blood orange-vanilla bean. We particularly love the antioxidant-rich hibiscus-watermelon, which tastes like everything a SoCal summer should be. It's lightly sweet and balances the floral hit of the watermelon with the earthy tang of hibiscus flowers.
If you're seeking something with a little more heft, there's a perky espresso-cardamom and the just-right chocolate-chile along with other hyphenated options to tempt. In lieu of milk, Taylor-Brown makes her own coconut-cashew "mylk" — the spelling is to indicate it's not an animal product — to add creaminess. Added bonus: Everything on the menu currently is vegan-friendly.
Taylor-Brown grew up in Hancock Park. After graduating from the International Culinary Center (formerly the French Culinary Institute) in New York, she worked in marketing at Scott Conant's Scarpetta and then Soho House, when her entrepreneurial spirit took over.
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"I wanted to do some sort of food product but wasn't quite sure what. When I was back in LA for my best friend's birthday, I made her some super awesome ice cream (basil mint chip and honey rosemary) and she was like, 'Umm ... why aren't you doing something with this?'" she says.
She happened onto ice pops because she says she "wanted to make something that I could eat on the regs — something I could feel good about having every day if I wanted to. Some balanced, not too sweet, fun infusions — I love playing with flavors — without dairy. "
The sweet goodness is not just limited to markets, either. With her new mobile Teebsie trike, Taylor-Brown will be popping up at street festivals, catered events and food fairs all around town.