When it comes to food trends, açaí is the gift that keeps on giving.
Originally a Brazilian dish, açaí bowls consisting of frozen and mashed açaí fruit topped with granola and fresh fruit have officially made a major stateside takeover. Açaí fruit first began making headlines as a "superfood" in the U.S. in the early 2000s, and Google data show that searches for "açaí" have been steadily increasing over the years, with a recurring summertime peak that reflects the cool, refreshing allure of the açaí bowl.
Interested in sampling the nation's favorite açaí offerings? Hoodline crunched the numbers to find the top 35 spots for açaí bowls around the country, using Yelp data and our own special sauce* to produce a data-driven breakdown of where the magical fruit reigns supreme across the U.S.
Topping the list is Orange Country's Blue Bowl, located at 417 S. Main St. in Orange, California. With an impressive five-star rating out of 1,166 reviews on Yelp, Blue Bowl has made a name for itself with its açaí and pitaya bowl offerings, with toppings spanning everything from fresh fruit to coconut shavings to cocoa nibs (see Blue Bowl's ingredients here). Open since July 2017, Blue Bowl is in expansion mode: a second location in Huntington Beach is on the way.
In second place is Downtown Austin's Blenders and Bowls, boasting 4.5 stars out of 345 reviews. Located inside Wonderlust Yoga Studio at 206 E. Fourth St., the health-oriented outlet specializes in smoothies and organic bowls of açaí topped with hemp granola, fresh fruit, and local honey. Blenders and Bowls is also building a local mini-empire, with four locations around Austin. (If you're in the Austin area, check out the menu right here.)
Ranked third among Yelpers across the nation is Alpharetta, Georgia's Flavor Juicery, which has 4.5 stars out of 67 reviews. Open at 4620 Kimball Bridge Rd. since November 2017, the business sells cold-pressed juices, smoothies and healthy bites like avocado toast—plus a broad array of açaí and pitaya bowls (pitaya is the fruit of several different cactus species indigenous to the Americas). Check out the bowls on offer, here.
When it comes to açaí's distribution across the country, Yelp data show that businesses tagged with the "açaí bowl" category are largely clustered around urban metros on the East and West coasts, with Southern California, Florida and Hawaii seeing notable concentrations of açaí-forward businesses. It may be that where temperatures are consistently higher and bathing suits in more frequent rotation, the demand for healthy, refreshing açaí bowls grows.
As for relative popularity across the nation, measured by average ratings for a given category, Yelp data indicate that Maine, Missouri, Kentucky, West Virginia, Mississippi and the Dakotas may eschew the Amazonian fruit, compared to national ratings patterns.
When it comes to how prevalent açaí bowl businesses are, state-by-state, Hawaii shows the strongest ratio of açaí bowl outlets compared to all other categories, with California, Delaware, Nevada and Arizona the runners-up. So, Hawaii should be your top stop if you want a diversity of açaí bowl options to choose from.
Got an appetite for a top-rated açaí bowl outlet near you? Check to see if one of your local spots made the list.
Top açaí bowl businesses, by popularity
- Blue Bowl (Orange, California)
- Blenders and Bowls (Austin, Texas)
- Flavor Juicery (Alpharetta, Georgia)
- Raw Juce (Weston, Florida)
- Tru Nature Juice Bar (Ocoee, Florida)
- Pure Raw Juice (Baltimore, Maryland)
- Island Smoothie (Corolla, North Carolina)
- Playa Bowls (Belmar, New Jersey)
- Juice Vitality (New York, New York)
- Ubatuba Acai (Los Angeles, California)
- Baya Bowls (Lahaina, Hawaii)
- Paradise Bowls (Irvine, California)
- Rejuv Juice (Hurst, Texas)
- Greenleaf Juicing Company (Indianapolis, Indiana)
- Bailey's Blendz (Boynton Beach, Florida)
- Mix Coffee (Medford, Oregon)
- Choice Health Bar (Lahaina, Hawaii)
- South Block (Arlington, Virginia)
- HB Beverage (Kirkland, Washington)
- Berry Divine Acai Bowls (Sedona, Arizona)
- Pick & Mix Juice Bar (Burbank, California)
- R3Fresh Juice Bar (San Diego, California)
- Vitality Bowls (Brea, California)
- The Surfinista (Cocoa Beach, Florida)
- Big Kahuna Bowls (Eugene, Oregon)
- Verve Bowls (Seattle, Washington)
- Nekter Juice Bar (Greenwood Village, Colorado)
- Haleiwa Bowls (Haleiwa, Hawaii)
- Jewel or Juice (Honolulu, Hawaii)
- Franklin Juice Co (Franklin, Tennessee)
- Huriyali (Charleston, South Carolina)
- Rock Steady Juice Joint (Jupiter, Florida)
- The Fresh Press (Portsmouth, New Hampshire)
- Mountain Berry Bowls (Whitefish, Montana)
- Da Cove Health Bar & Cafe (Honolulu, Hawaii)
* To determine "best" businesses, Hoodline took into account the business's Yelp rating and the significance of that rating proportional to the number of reviews, as well as regional variations, to ensure that states with a stronger pattern of reviews don't have an unfair advantage over states that tend to review businesses less frequently.