Standing by the produce bins outside this "West Indian and American grocery," the Korean owner confirmed that the vegetable labeled cho-cho was, in fact, chayote. But like me, she was clueless about the alcoholic content of International Juice brand carrot juice and stout (10 fl. oz.; $2.99). The slapdash list of ingredients doesn't translate "milk solids" or "stout" into French (the manufacturer is based in Brampton, Ontario, Canada), while it lists the thickener called carrageen twice, once under its own name and once via "mousse Irlandaise," the seaweed known as Irish moss.
Since International Juice also makes a beverage called Magnum, I thought at first that "stout" might be a manly reference, also applied to numerous over-the-counter Jamaican tonics with lurid labels. But in Jamaica, I discovered, a freshly blended "stout punch" or "culture juice" does contain beer; it might possibly retain a little kick, too, even though the Guinness (or the local Dragon stout) is swamped by other, sweeter ingredients. And then there's Guinness Stout ice cream, which offers a bare trace of beery flavor but, I bet, little or no alcohol.
My afternoon bottle offered a similar hint of stout beneath a carroty sludge, and an even thinner connection to healthy living: 70 of its 170 calories come from fat (must be the milk solids), while the vitamin A content, despite the veggies, is precisely zero. Tastes better than it sounds, but I'd prefer to find it freshly made; does anyone have a lead on a Jamaican joint in New York that makes "stout punch" or "culture juice"?
Also shown below: Kim's neighbor Vincent.
1521 Newkirk Ave. (East 15th St.-Buckingham Rd.), Ditmas Park, Brooklyn