Originating from the Amazon rainforest, the humble little dark purple acai berry brims with antioxidants, amino acids, high fibre, essential fatty acids, vitamins and minerals, plus it contains 10 times more antioxidants than its blueberry cousin. Almost unheard of a few years ago here, the acai berry has since exploded in popularity, thanks in no small part to the highly Instagrammable acai bowl. While the accompanying creams and syrups may not be healthy, the Brazilian superfood served in a bowl filled with anything from granola to fresh fruits sure is. Have your acai fix at these places.
The Cafe BY HIC
Using only acai berries and bananas (no fillers or syrups), The Cafe by HIC serves a full-bodied and fruity base and a dose of toothsome house-made coconut gula Melaka granola with almonds and sunflower seeds. There’s great texture and a caramelly, nutty flavour in each spoonful. Topped with banana slices, coconut flakes, chia seeds and goji berries, the Classic Acai is a satisfying, guilt-free dessert fix. #01-104 The Centrepoint, 176 Orchard Rd.
It’s akin to having a dessert, except that the Acai Smoothie Bowl at Strangers’ Reunion is completely guilt-free. The creamy, frozen superfood base of acai, mixed berries and coconut water, is topped with honey granola, pepitas, coconut flakes, goji berries, and fresh seasonal strawberries and blueberries, making it a rainbow fiesta. The granola and seeds add a right amount of crunch, while the other toppings balance the sweetness of the berries perfectly. This is one acai bowl we will happily have again and again. 33-35 Kampong Bahru Rd.
A perfect pick-me-up is the Sao Paolo Super Bowl. The cacao and soy milk give the blackberry-like flavour of acai an addictive nutty and bitter aftertaste, complemented with generous toppings of strawberries, blueberries, bananas, chia seeds and homemade granola. A dollop of house-made almond butter, made from freshly roasted American whole almonds and sea salt, adds a delectably savoury note and a boost of good fats. #01-03 Orchard Building Singapore, 1 Grange Rd.
From the folks who brought us Common Man Coffee Roasters comes Parallel, a kiosk serving everything from speciality coffees and smoothies to acai bowls in the bustling business district. We like that the antioxidant is devoid of added sugars or sweeteners and comes with a delightful array of strawberries, dragon fruit, toasted coconut flakes and dried goji berries for an added crunch. Ask for a complimentary swirl of Australian raw organic honey if you prefer it sweeter. #B1-34, 1 Raffles Plc.
This list will not be complete without Project Acai–Singapore’s first dedicated acai cafe. Using the world’s first and only fairtrade verified and certified organic acai from the Amazon rainforest, these antioxidant-rich berries are blended throughout the day to achieve the freshest batch of acai base–thick and creamy in texture with hints of graininess. We like their picture-perfect Original Flower Bowl, which is a wholesome combination of banana, granola, strawberries and chia seeds, topped with a heaping amount of bee pollen, cacao nibs, goji and coconut shavings. Holland Village, 27 Lorong Liput
Seed and Soil
This cold-pressed juice and smoothie bowl joint tucked within Tanjong Pagar Plaza doles out a thoroughly nutritious and textural acai creation, topped with dragon fruit and strawberries. The drupes are procured through Selva, a supplier that sources the best organic, fairtrade and sustainable acai from the Amazon jungle. What gives this bowl a nourishing boost is the addition of Seed and Soil’s Superfood Sprinkle, comprising a protein-, fibre- and omega-3-rich mixture of homemade Rawnola (oats, dates and coconut), pumpkin seeds, goji berries and buckwheat. This is what we would reach out for post-workout. #01-22, 1 Tanjong Pagar Plaza
Park Bench Deli
We normally wouldn’t peg gourmet sandwich purveyor Park Bench Deli as a healthy food establishment, but surprisingly their acai bowl is as wholesome as it is delicious. The refreshing organic Sambazon acai concoction is balanced with apple juice and bananas for a rounder flavour, then punched up with chopped fresh fruits such as berries, grapes, and stone fruits–whichever is in season–and their homemade honey almond granola. The mix was inspired by Andrei Soen’s (one of Park Bench Deli’s founders) go-to breakfast after a surf session while growing up in California. 179 Telok Ayer St.
The Good Boys
The new kid on the block in the Tai Seng industrial hub, The Good Boys serves a hearty acai bowl that will also satisfy your sweet tooth. Bananas, strawberries and coconut water join organic, raw pasteurised acai to create a delightfully creamy acai base. Teeming with toppings, there truly is a play of textures in this bowl, with chewy honeyed dates in the acai base and a house-made toasted muesli and seed mix. Throw in coconut flakes and fresh berries and you’ll have yourself a super-sized breakfast-dessert. #01-26 The Commerze Building, 1 Irving Plc.