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You go, yumberry

First it was pomegranate, then acai and goji ... now there's a new super-antioxidant star on the scene, the yumberry (there's a nice photo of it here). That's its real name, all right; it's an anglicization of yang-mei, a fresh fruit that's been grown in China for millennia. (Why are we Westerners always the last to know?) Apparently this fruit is so perishable (like a raspberry) that it can't be imported to the U.S., so you'll only find it in juice form, and it's positively stuffed with free-radical-fighting antioxidants; enthusiasts are calling it the next big thing on the health-beverage horizon. (The New York Times' fruit sleuth wrote about it in December.)

Just today, I got some yumberry juice samples from Frutzzo, the first U.S. company that's bottling it; they offer USDA-organic, 100 percent yumberry juice in hip recycled-glass bottles (I'm a sucker for foods packaged in glass) and recyclable metal caps. Frutzzo also makes yumberry blends, with cherry, blueberry, and pomegranate juices. But the pure yumberry stuff is terrific; tart but not puckery, light and refreshing -- a delicious, healthy treat. Aside from drinking it at my desk for a worthy pick-me-up, I plan to experiment with it in cooking too; wonder what it's like when reduced to a syrup?

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