WATERTOWN — Erica Turck is making some big changes to the Atman Juice Bar she’s owned in the Lincoln Building for the past four years.
She’s moving the popular downtown juice bar into more space in an apartment building on Newell Street and adding a breakfast and lunch menu.
Moving from a storefront that seats about 12, Ms. Turck is opening the Atman Juice Bar and Cafe, the first retail establishment in the Riverview Apartments at 497 Newell St., in space that seats 50 to 60 people.
The Atman cafe will continue to offer the juices, smoothies, smoothie bowls, espresso coffees and loose-leaf spirit tea that made her customers go back over and over again, she said.
The health food menu will now include New York-style bagels, gourmet toasts, salads, breakfast sandwiches and wraps, and egg, veggie, seafood and tofu sandwiches.
“I want to offer everything to everybody,” she said.
Customers can expect the homemade granola, South American berries and specialty spreads that were a part of Atman — “soul” in Sanskrit — all of these years, she said.
With a plant-based menu, the cafe will offer organic and local meat, gluten free and dairy free options, as well as vegetarian and vegan. She hopes to use as much fresh produce and meats from local farms as she can, Ms. Turck said.
“This will bring more culture and health conscious food options to the Watertown community,” she said.
Ms. Turck just signed on to sell Upstate Coffee Roaster products that are named after upstate locations. Customers can sit at tables with two or four seats, high-top chairs or communal seating.
The 3,500-square-foot space that faces the Black River will have an industrial feel, using wood and metal decor and a cement-top juice bar.
She’s bringing four of her employees from the juice bar and adding about five employees to work in the “hot kitchen.”
With her Integrative Wellness business, Ms. Turck, who just finished her studies at The Institute of Integrative Nutrition, also will offer work shops on cooking and lifestyle issues.
Five years ago, she opened the Vigilante Yoga studio in the back of the Lincoln Building storefront, then added the juice bar about a year later. She sold the yoga studio in December 2019 to yoga teacher Lisa Woodward.
On Wednesday, the Watertown Local Development Corp. revolving loan fund committee approved a $40,000 loan to the business to help with the move. The full Watertown Trust is expected to vote on the loan Thursday.
The revolving loan committee also approved a $40,000 loan to building owner Jake Johnson and his partners, who purchased the apartment building this year, to renovate the space the cafe is going in.
Watertown Trust board members liked the concept of the business and its proximity to two other restaurants, Maggie’s on the River and Garland City Beer Works. Customers should also come from the apartment building residents, mostly Fort Drum soldiers, they said.
The juice bar already has a following of repeat customers who have indicated they will follow her to the new location, she said.
Donald W. Rutherford, chief executive officer of the Watertown Trust, said the building’s former owner intended to place retail businesses on the ground floor but it never happened.
“It sounds exciting,” board member Michael Pierce said.
She hopes to open on Aug. 16, with her hours 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and until 2 p.m. on Sundays.