Tucked away slightly off the main shopping belt of Orchard Road, Coocaça provides respite from a long day of shopping with acai bowls, frozen yoghurt and smoothies. Each acai bowl comes topped with more superfoods like goji berries as well as fresh fruits for a sweet treat that isn't as sinful as a chocolate pie. Too full for a full acai bowl? Get an acai soft serve that comes in mini ($3.20), small ($5.90) or regular ($7.50), the latter comes with your choice of fruit and topping for a quick and easy acai fix.
What started out as a small stall in Katong has now grown to an expanding acai brand with three outlets islandwide. Founded by two SMU undergraduates, Anna Ng and Isabel Lee, An Acai Affair aims to spread the gospel of the superfood's benefits while making a tasty and affordable treat for the masses. Try the Triple A ($5.90-$13.90), the most basic acai bowl that comes with fresh fruits and superfoods like chia seeds and almond flakes. If you're looking for something more filling, it also has a range of sourdough bread ($5.90/$6.90) that comes topped with cookie butter, berries or fresh avocado.
Blink and you might miss this little shop tucked unassumingly in the crowded basement of Raffles Places. Parallel specialises in acai bowls and Common Man Coffee Roasters specialty coffee – likewise, its menu is short, simple and straight to the point. The bowls come in two sizes (from $8.90) and are as pretty as they come. Topped with banana, blueberries and granola (or you can go for even more unusual toppings like goji berries and dragonfruit), the bowls are all naturally sweeten with no added sugars. If you like your slurp your superberries, the extra-smooth and thick acai smoothies will be right up your alley.
Haakon, pronounced ‘haw-coon’, is a Scandinavian-inspired café that brings superfoods from Norway to your plate. It only uses premium Norwegian smoked salmon – it’s rich in protein, Omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants – to make dishes like salad bowls ($11.90) and eggs Benedict ($15.90). For those with a sweet tooth, go for Haakon’s classic acai bowl (from $7.90), topped with coconut flakes, banana, strawberries and blueberries for a quick and guilt-free energy boost.
Project Açaí puts this berry superfood front and centre at its Holland Village café. The berry features in bowls ($6.80-$13.50) with toppings like granola, fresh fruit and goji berries, as well as smoothies ($8.50) like the Beach Body To-go. The acai is smoothly blended and doesn’t melt easily but we later find out that although they are mixed with other ingredients, the acai purée comes pre-packaged from Sambazon, the same brand that Park Bench Deli uses in their acai bowls.
To bring the health food home, pick it up in packs like the original blend with guarana ($12.85/one pack, $21.40/two) or pure unsweetened ($15/one pack, $26/two) to make your own acai bowls. They also sell freeze-dried acai powder ($40/tub).
Project Açaí has another branch at Ngee Ann City.
Selva is the supplier for Salad Stop’s acai bowls, which quickly sell out after the lunch crowd, so if you’re looking to have it as a mid-afternoon snack, get there early.
The bowl ($11) comes with banana, mango, kiwi, grapes, pumpkin seeds and a generous scatter of chia seeds. Despite its apparent popularity, the taste of acai is barely discernible. If we could rename this, it'd be called 'acai-inspired purple yogurt'.
Not just a hot lunch spot, Aloha Poke morphs into a chilled-out happy hour bar with a dinner menu, and yes, acai ($9) is part of the dessert options. The serving of puréed berries is shallow and melts quickly, likely due to its icy, crunchy consistency. The sweet treat is topped with blueberries, granola, strawberries, raspberries, pineapple cubes, and a sprig of mint. Go for it if you have a craving for sugar but in need of a healthier way of having it.