Hailing from the Amazon rainforest, the açaí berry is touted as a superfood by health professionals. The berry, packed with antioxidants and omega-3s, tastes best when blended into a smoothie bowl. While açaí bowls are a longtime staple in Brazil, they are increasing in popularity in San Diego. Here are some of the California city’s best açaí bowls.
Sambazon was the first company to sell açaí in the U.S., and chances are that if you’ve seen açaí in the grocery store, it’s a Sambazon product. The açaí exporter also has two cafés in Southern California that showcase their knowledge and passion for the berry. The menu is extensive, featuring everything from an açaí latte to a bowl named for surfer Rob Machado that’s mixed with chocolate and peanut butter and topped with granola and banana.
Staying true to its musically inspired name, all the items on The Mad Beet’s menu are humorous twists on artist or song names. The Beyoncai, for example, is an açaí bowl that comes with granola, honey, peanut butter, strawberry, and banana, while the Berry J. Blidge smoothie blends açaí with pomegranate juice, cranberry juice, blueberries, strawberries, and banana.
Based in Southern California, Nékter has locations across San Diego. In addition to açaí and pitaya bowls, the juice bar also offers açaí smoothies. There are several different bowls to choose from, and all come topped with hempseed granola and fresh fruit. For a tropical twist, try the Açaí Mango bowl, which is blended with pineapple, mango, and coconut water and has coconut flakes sprinkled on top.
While they are known for their coffee, Better Buzz’s açaí bowls also generate a buzz. All are topped with fresh berries, bananas, and granola, making them a hearty option for breakfast or lunch. Better Buzz also has several locations throughout San Diego.
Attached to a yoga studio, Trilogy Cafe has an all-vegan menu with five different açaí and pitaya bowls from which to choose. The Superfood Bowl is a robust and nutrient-rich option, blending in almond milk, blueberries, bananas, goji berries, spinach, and coconut butter. It’s then topped with banana, hemp seeds, chia seeds, almonds, coconut flakes, and strawberries.