The East Village now has a United States first in the form of a blender.
AO Bowl, a new health food eatery on 82 St. Marks Place focusing on vegetarian and vegan options, is boasting the first commercial use of a vacuum-pressed blender in the entire United States.
This fresh way of enjoying smoothies forgoes the use of spinning blades in favor of adopting a powerful suction that retains over 90% of juice compared to the about 60-70% found in standard blending methods, according to Blendtec, the company behind the technology.
“If you think about an apple or a banana, when you cut into it turns brown—that’s oxidation. What happens with oxidation is it destroys the nutrients. So, when you make a smoothie at home that blender is spinning at 100 miles per hour it is slicing through every single little bit of it, it is oxidizing everything. Using this the smoothie will not only look brighter, but it will also taste fresher,” Zachery Howitt founder and chef of AO Bowl told amNewYork Metro.
It is not just blending Howitt is hoping to reinvent, however. AO Bowl also has the distinction of brewing their own oat milk and growing their own alfalfa sprouts in order to ensure fresh products, which includes bowls of healthy food—the packaging of which is biodegradable—with the availability to include side protein such as salmon for non-vegans. With so many restaurants offering vegetarian and vegan options as a supplement, Howitt is proud to flip the script in this regard by making it their main selection all organic, Gluten-free, plant-based and Keto-friendly.
“We are trying to raise the bar on sustainability,” Howitt said.
Although the storefront is now open and serving East Villagers fresh smoothies and healthy bowls, the road to becoming a New York City first was paved with obstacles wrought by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Howitt explained that he actually signed the lease for his new business just prior to the deadly virus reaching the Big Apple. When the city shut down, the future of AO Bowl remained uncertain, yet after one and a half years Howitt’s hearty food venture at last came to fruition. It is thanks to determination like this that Blendtec Founder Tom Dickson yearned to work alongside AO Bowl to exhibit the blending technology.
“We’re so excited to partner with AO Bowl, the first commercial operation to use our breakthrough Blendtec vacuum technique to provide their customers with one-of-a-kind beverages and bowls that retain all of the nutrients from the blended fruits and vegetables,” Dickson said.
AO Bowl is based on Japanese wellness and technology, combined with made-to-order bowls, juices, smoothies, and even coffee.