By Connor Beach
A recent health food trend, the acai bowl, is becoming a powerhouse in Huntington.
Several eateries have added to their menu the bowls, which include the acai berry, a “super fruit” native to northern and central South America that is rich in antioxidants.
Real Food, Real People has been serving up acai bowls and other healthy menu options since September, and owner Lauren Lavoro said Huntington’s millennial crowd has flocked to the shop.
Lavoro, 23, of Massapequa, said members of her generation, who are “more health conscious,” made up a majority of the eatery’s initial clientele. However, as word of the health benefits and delicious taste of the acai bowls have become more widely known, a more diverse clientele have been coming in to try what the shop has to offer.
Lavoro said her shop’s signature acai bowl is one of those things that “you can’t see and taste without liking it.”
Social media spurred the acai berry’s popularity as a health food, Lavoro said, and she decided to feature the fruit on her menu because the health benefits reflected her desire to live a positive lifestyle.
“We wanted to take back control of our minds and our bodies,” she said. “We wanted to know exactly what we were putting into it, and that meant real food with real ingredients.”
Lavoro had trouble finding anywhere to eat when she made the decision to become a vegan, which inspired her to open a place of her own.
“I got fed up with all the processed food and all the additives,” Lavoro said.
While almost all restaurants try to market the appearance of their food, Real Food, Real People is trying to change the way people think about health food and the way it should look.
“We care about each customer, we care about each dish and we care about the way it looks when it comes outs,” Lavoro said.
By far the most popular and visually stunning dish on the menu is the Acai Smoothie Bowl, which is served in a pineapple ($13) and features organic acai blended with strawberries, blueberries and banana topped with strawberries, blueberries, banana, granola, coconut and honey.
The cool, refreshing blend of fruit has a sweet berry taste, and the granola adds a much-needed crunch to the dish that complements the texture of the smoothie. With warmer weather approaching, the acai bowl promises to be the perfect relief on a hot summer afternoon.
Lavoro said she wants Real Food, Real People to become more than just a place to get a healthy bite.
She said, “I want everyone to feel like this is somewhere where they can go away and get healthy food and have a healthy mind.”