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Ethnic Faves
Ethnic Faves

Tropical Tribe’s Authentic Acai

By Chris Fleck Photos By Chris Fleck
November 18, 2012

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Classic Acai Bowl ($7 regular, $8.50 large)

Ancient tribes of the Amazon valleys consumed the ultra-beneficial acai berries for numerous reasons. Survival was key for people of these tribes and with the support of acai consumption, people gained healthy, optimal energy and focus from juices they concocted from acai pulp.

Today, we may not need acai to survive, but the berries’ nutritional enhancements combined with its delicious taste makes an acai bowl a smart and healthy choice.

Yet, as the acai craze has certainly sky-rocketed in Hawaii, one acai connoisseur is making sure quality is not compromised in the process.

“What you truly want is the properties of the acai. It is extremely higher than many other fruits and berries. It has many vitamins, much more antioxidants than blueberries or grapes and has the same fats similar to avocado, a healthy, cholesterol controlling fat,” says Tropical Tribe owner Andre Alves de Moraes, who imports his high-quality, premium acai and guarana berries directly from Brazil.

“When I came to Hawaii, I started trying acai and noticed something was off. What happens is acai is an expensive product so places started mixing theirs with blueberries, apple juice or soy milk. You get a low percentage, low quality acai.”

The owner likes to keep his acai bowls simple, keeping the natural flavors and properties of the acai and guarana berries as the foundation of each bowl.

Tropical Tribe’s Classic Acai Bowl ($7 regular, $8.50 large) combines acai, guarana and toppings, which include organic granola, strawberry, blueberry, banana and honey.

“I love acai, it is extremely popular in Brazil. I just wanted to bring authenticity to the acai here,” Alves de Moraes says.

Tropical Tribe

1637 Kapiolani Blvd., Honolulu
(Across from Papa John’s Pizza and 24-Hour Fitness)
Monday-Thursday and Saturday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Fridays, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Closed Sundays