- Matthew Schniper
7340 N. Academy Blvd., 949-350-5817, Nekterjuicebar.com
Nékter launched a decade ago in Southern California and has quickly grown beyond a couple hundred locations.
This is just the first to open via a local franchisee, who has plans for several more in town. The place appears bright and cute, health-focused with lots of trendy superfoods on the menu, ranging from bee pollen and goji berries to chia seeds.
They make cashew milk in-house, and sell a base vegan ice cream called Skoop. I try an agave-sweetened version of it named Monster Cookie Dough that’s a crazy vibrant blue color due to blue spirulina (cool!); it also hosts chunks of vegan cookie dough and chocolate chips and tastes like cupcake frosting in a kinda cloying way, but my addition of fresh blueberries, coconut flakes and cacao nibs makes a nice flavor offset.
I skip the juices for a Turmeric Sunrise smoothie that’s not joking around when it comes to big, astringent turmeric flavor from no small amount of the anti-inflammatory king added, with tongue-tickling mango and lime juice bitterness balanced by sweet pineapple and coconut water. Due to color and flavor, you’ll be surprised there’s not orange in it.
Lastly we devour an Açai Superfood Bowl with too many ingredients to list here between the fruit, veggies and garnishes plus hempseed granola. It’s a divine, purple ice-cream-like treat due to all the natural sugars and presents beautifully, like Nékter as a whole.