Acai bowls may be the latest food trend, but it’s one we’re hoping will stick around for a while. Many people have asked, “What exactly is an acai bowl and how do you pronounce it?” According to Long Island Super Bowls in Syosset, the latest acai bowl establishment to open on the Island, the acai has emerged as the next great superfood—and, since you asked, is pronounced, “ah-sigh-ee.”
The acai is a tropical berry which comes from the Amazon rainforests of Brazil, and is filled with antioxidants, having even more health properties than blueberries. In the United States, it first became popular in California, where acai bowls were being served almost everywhere. In recent years it has gained popularity on the East Coast for both its health benefits and taste.
The fruit is not shipped to the US whole, instead it comes frozen, and is then blended. Approximately three years ago, Long Island Super Bowls founder Jason Mazzarone opened his first acai store in Sayville. A year and a half after later, another Long Island Super Bowls opened in Patchogue. The Syosset store, located on Jericho Turnpike across from Syosset Hospital, opened December 7 of last year, and business has been booming ever since. The three stores make up a quickly growing franchise which is solely Long Island-based.
Syosset owner Craig Giorgio explains what sets Long Island Super Bowls apart from other competitors out there.
“The acai comes frozen, and we blend the acai with strawberry and banana and that’s what makes ours different from some of our competitors,” says Giorgio. “Some places may take the acai and just blend it with water to keep the cost down, especially because fruits like strawberries can sometimes be expensive. If you go someplace and get an acai bowl that’s really soupy, that’s an indication that it was blended with water.”
At Long Island Super Bowls, only top quality ingredients are used. A layer of homemade granola, made at the Sayville store, is put on the bottom of a clear container. Next comes a beautiful layer of blended acai, another layer of granola, and finally a topping of bananas, strawberries, blueberries, shaved coconut and honey. Specialty toppings (for a dollar extra) include pineapple, mango, kiwi, Nutella, chia seeds, hemp seeds, flax seeds, cookie butter, homemade almond butter and homemade peanut butter. Keeping things local, the almond and peanut butters come from Long Island based Laurel’s Butter, where all natural ingredients are used.
“This is also what separates us,” says Giorgio. “We don’t use common name brand products; we use homemade, which is better for you.”
In the beginning many people thought of the acai bowl as a breakfast meal, but now people are eating it any time of day. It’s healthy, beautiful and filling. A regular size bowl is about $7.00 and a smaller kid’s size is $5.00. Parents are bringing their small children in and giving them acai bowls as a healthy alternative to other frozen items out there. It’s so good that they don’t even know they are eating healthy.
The consistency of the acai, when properly made, is a cold, creamy concoction that just melts in your mouth. It is packed with flavor and tastes so fresh. If you’re not in the mood for an acai bowl, smoothies are also available at Super Bowls and are just as good and healthy.
Long Island Super Bowls is open seven days a week from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.