Serving acai bowls packed with flavorful bursts of rainforest super fruit and granola, SoBol is a different take on fast food, and Wellington is home to the first Florida franchise.
“We call it ‘the better bowl,’” said Nick Pesko, SoBol’s director of marketing. “It became so popular on Long Island after our first location opened. People kept asking, ‘Can you open one in my town?’ So, we decided to franchise.”
Wellington resident and New York native Suzanne Madison, mother of four girls, is the proprietor of SoBol’s 37th location. While there are 36 others across the northeast, SoBol’s first Florida home is in the Courtyard Shops of Wellington.
SoBol is a departure from the more typical fast food, and Madison describes it as a great alternative for breakfast, lunch or just an anytime go-to snack.
“My older daughter suffers from food allergies, like gluten and dairy. So, I’m always looking for something that’s not commonly found to eat,” Madison said. “I taught for 15 years in New York working with autistic children, many of whom are on restrictive diets. I feel strongly about the product and wanted to offer a healthy alternative to the Wellington community.”
At SoBol, you’ll get only the freshest of ingredients. “Our granola is gluten free. It’s raw oats, almonds and cashews. So, it’s protein and fiber,” Pesko explained. “The acai has an energy-boosting agent. There’s a really positive feeling you get. It’s gluten free, and vegan and vegetarian friendly. It’s vegan if you take off the honey completely. We’re dairy free. We use no dairy in any of our menu items. We’re traditionally soy, almond or coconut milk, as well as apple juice and acai juice.”
The bowls are also served up fast, making it convenient for those on the go.
“We try to keep it as simple and quick as possible, and it allows us to get you your bowl in what we hope to be two minutes or less,” Pesko said. “That’s our goal every time. So, it’s a quick service, fast-food-style restaurant, but we focus on a healthier alternative to your traditional fast food. Everyone’s looking for healthier options out there.”
The café primarily serves acai bowls and fruit smoothies. “We blend everything fresh daily and carve our fruit fresh each day for our customers, and everything is made to order, so all our bowls are customizable to whatever it is you like,” Pesko explained.
Each bowl starts with two layers of homemade granola and comes with SoBol’s puree. “If it’s the Acai Bowl, it’s acai berry that’s flash frozen that we get shipped directly to us from the Amazon, and then our blend with strawberry-banana and a splash of soy milk, that’s like a thick fruit smoothie. Then on top of that, you get fresh-cut strawberries, bananas and blueberries, as well as coconut flakes and a drizzle of honey,” Pesko described.
What’s different from other concepts, he said, is the way the bowls can be customized. “You can customize that one bowl any way that you like, so if you don’t like blueberry, you can take it off, and add any of our other standard or specialty toppings,” Pesko said.
Specialty toppings include all-natural peanut butter, almond butter and Nutella, as well as fresh-cut kiwi and pineapple.
Aside from the popular Acai Bowl, there are other flavorful options.
The Green Bowl is made with spinach, mango, banana and kale with a splash of almond milk. It’s all blended and layered between SoBol’s signature homemade granola then topped with mango, strawberries, blueberries, also with a sprinkle of coconut and a drizzle of honey.
The Pitaya Bowl features a super fruit with origins in Southeast Asia, Central America and South America. Also known as dragon fruit, pitaya is filled with several antioxidants. It’s blended with strawberries and banana to make a thick smoothie, also layered between granola, then topped with fresh mango, kiwi, pineapple, as well as a coconut sprinkle and honey drizzle.
Aside from the exotics, fruits and vegetables are sourced locally. The bowls come in three different sizes, including a kids’ 8-ounce bowl, up to a super-sized 32-ounce bowl, with prices ranging from $6 to just under $14.
Smoothies are also served fresh. Flavors range from acai, super green and very berry to pitaya plus and a strawberry banana blend.
The intimate café seats about 20, as well as some outdoor seating. SoBol is looking to expand the brand across Florida, including Tampa, as well as Delray Beach and Boca Raton.
Pesko is upbeat on SoBol’s future in the Sunshine State.
“It’s incredibly delicious and invigorating,” he said. “I think it’s what people are looking for to live and lead a healthier lifestyle.”
And for franchise owner Suzanne Madison, opening up shop in Wellington is an opportunity to become entrenched in the community with SoBol’s healthy options, as well as involve her four daughters, ages nine to 27, helping to empower them to do things on their own and showing them that they, too, can do anything they put their minds to, whether it’s for their health or their career path.
SoBol is open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. They’re busiest at lunchtime and plan to offer delivery service soon. The restaurant is located at 13860 Wellington Trace in the Courtyard Shops. For more information, call (561) 631-9900 or visit www.mysobol.com.