Options for healthy eating in Naples are expanding all the time, with an emphasis on smoothies, bowls, and beverages such as kombucha and matcha. One category leader is The Bowl, which offers a menu that is 100-percent organic, vegan, and dairy-free. Owner Kylee Brinkman opened her first store on Pine Ridge Road in 2016, followed by a second location on Central Avenue. Both are run “as green as possible,” to include cups and bowls that are compostable.
“I lived in California for a while, and when I moved back to Naples, I realized what was missing here,” says Brinkman. “We try to create a happy and healthy environment. Beyond the food, it’s really a complete lifestyle.”
The best seller among the açai bowls is the AB&J, which puts a spin on the classic PB&J by subbing in almond butter. Of the pitaya bowls, the favorite is the Islamorada (pitaya, strawberries, banana, pineapple juice, and coconut milk). For a smoothie, try the Blueberry Brekkie (blueberries, banana, granola, honey, and coconut milk) or the Dirty Milkshake (açai, cacao, almond butter, hemp protein, and hemp milk). There’s cold brew coffee on tap, along with kombucha, matcha, matcha lemonade, and a matcha latte.
The Bowl attracts a younger crowd, with the primary target market being women between the ages of 24 and 35. It’s also a hangout for local middle and high school students, something Brinkman encourages. “I work with all the schools and give away a lot of sponsorships,” she says. “I’d much rather see the kids in here than heading for a fast food joint.”