Continuing on with the Glendale eateries today, Da Juice Bar was a completely unexpected find. Just two blocks north of Raffi’s Place and next door to the iconic Cuban bakery Porto’s, we were in the mood for a healthy brunch. That ruled out our other current favorites in the area that are either sit-down (shoutout to the best Argentinian skirt steak at El Morfi Grill) or heavier fare (Shake Shack, Din Tai Fung). When we saw the açai bowls, we knew we’d found our calling for the day. No more aimlessly scrolling through Yelp – I’m almost positive that choosing a restaurant is a heavy contributor to my seemingly constant decision fatigue.
The interior is, in a word, striking. The brightness of the orange and green walls is only matched by the employee uniforms. The chalkboard-style menu is more of the same, a weird flex of RGB values that makes the organization of the dishes somehow more confusing. More interestingly, the bowls we sought were equally complex; their two scoops could be mixed-and-matched, so we had one full açai bowl and a half-matcha, half-pitaya bowl. We passed on the charcoal cream, which we weren’t adventurous enough to sample.
The fruit, and especially granola, were piled generously on our creations. The flat pie tins were a novel, but welcome variation on the usual deeper bowls. While thoroughly lacking in subtlety, the shallow container gives equal access to each part of the bowl – you aren’t forced to skim off your toppings to get to the açai. Almond butter is extra, but personally, I can never pass it up (I never get guac at Chipotle, anyway).
The fruit itself was fresh and abundant, as you’d expect from any fruit-centric restaurant. While the pitaya and matcha give an appropriate splash of color, I found the açai to pack the most flavor and anchor the dish the best. And despite the appearances, nothing was overly sweet or sugary. As someone with a notorious sweet tooth, I typically accept that fruit bowls have already trod the tried-and-true American path of ‘breakfast = dessert.’ I appreciate the restraint of Da Juice Bar to serve pure and simple goodness to their customers.
Appreciation: I can’t think of any other reason why a restaurant would modify ‘The’ in their name as ‘Da’ except their owner is local Hawaiian. What are the odds?
Da Juice Bar
305 1/2 N. Brand Blvd.
Glendale, CA 91203