Ohana Açai Café scoops up fresh take on açaí

Anna Compagno

Açai smoothie bowls are a fairly new trend that have been sweeping up and down the California coast. Açai is an energy-filled snack that not only tastes delicious, but has an extensive list of health benefits which include  promoting heart and skin health, boosting the immune system and energy levels, and improving mental function according to Global Healing Center.

Recently opened on Sept. 27 and located at the Market Place shopping center in Corte Madera, Ohana Açai Café is the perfect place to get your daily dose of açai. Within walking distance from Redwood, students can buy a healthy lunch and still make it back to school in time for class.

Serving both açai and pitaya (dragon fruit), smoothie bowls, smoothies, as well as homemade Kombucha on tap, they use only fresh, healthy and organic ingredients, according to owner Todd Donaldson. Donaldson has been in the açai business for over five years and was inspired to start his own company after trying it for the first time in Santa Barbara.

“I love being able to look customers in the eye and know I’m serving them something that not only tastes good, but is also healthy and amazing for their bodies. I only make things with the highest quality ingredients because that’s the way I like to eat,” Donaldson said.

The Hanalei Bowl, a blended of sweet açai, ripe banana, juicy pineapple, tasty papaya and coconut milk topped with fresh granola, chopped strawberries, coconut shreds, cacao chunks and a drizzle of honey, stood out to me on the menu due to the variety of appetizing flavors. It proved to be a mouthwatering display, with the honey slowly oozing down the sides of the bowl and the strawberries, granola, cacao and coconut sinking into a cold blend of açai. Bursting with flavor, each ingredient combined together tastefully for every bite of the delightful bowl. It had an ideal ratio of toppings to blend, and the bowl was surprisingly filling even though it was mainly composed of fruit.

Serving fresh and nutritious açai, Ohana Bowls opened in the Market Place shopping center in Corte Madera on Sept. 27
Serving fresh and nutritious açai, Ohana Bowls opened in the Market Place shopping center in Corte Madera on Sept. 27

The second bowl I tried, the Avo Açai Bowl, topped with granola, bee pollen, shredded coconut, granola and a drizzle of honey laying on top of the pure açai, papaya, pineapple, banana, avocado and coconut milk, did not fall short of my high expectations. With every bite I took, the luscious smoothie base melted in my mouth and I tasted every flavor each spoonful.

The menu offers a variety of açai blends, including peanut butter, kale, avocado, banana and strawberry bowls, topped with granola, fresh fruit, honey and much more. This extensive list means that there is a type of bowl that suits any taste palette. Ohana Açai Café, is still working on adding new additions to their menu, according to Donaldson.


Although it is a little pricy at $8 for a small bowl, $10 for a medium and $13 for a large, Ohana Açai Café’s bowls are made with all organic ingredients. The fresh ingredients and knowledge that you’re eating a nourishing and delicious meal makes up for the price. Furthermore,the portions are also sizeable considering the prices.

With a laid-back coastal theme, the overall atmosphere of the cafe is relaxed and offers a modern twist on a typical smoothie bar. One of my favorite parts of the experience was hearing the owner consistently ask the workers if they were having fun. Being in an environment where you know that the owner cares if the employees as well as their customers are happy makes the overall experience even more enjoyable.

Currently, their hours are Monday-Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., but they are hoping to expand to 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. once they are at full speed. Their Instagram, @ohanabowls, actively posts updates.