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04–11–2013

Food Review

#03

Wise Cicada Organic Food Store Super Smoothie

All I'm saying is:don't try this Super Smoothie at home!

I like Wise Cicada Organic Food Store in Newmarket (Auckland, New Zealand). But more specifically, I really like their cafe, with it’s worldly, diner-like feel.  Very few people know that their head chef (Renata Holicova) is a wholefoods educator and raw food enthusiast. It’s reassuring to know that anything you order is plant-based and organic, and their prices are very reasonable considering! They have a different hot dish offered daily, an extensive salad bar, and a super-delicious array of cakes and slices. The cakes and slices are all raw, gluten-free, sugar-free, dairy-free and egg-free.

What strikes me as a little disappointing is that while Little Bird Unbakery enjoy cult status in Auckland, it is not so for Wise Cicada. This comes down to having a more ‘foo-foo’ brand and the type of customers that this attracts. Oh well, that just means less waiting in line, and more available seating for me when I feel the need to treat myself or am just too lazy to make something myself!

Wise Cicada's Smoothies

Wise Cicada only have three smoothies to choose from. It doesn’t sound like a lot of choice, does it? Each smoothie, however, contains a whole heap of ingredients.

From a business point-of-view these fancy milkshakes make sense, but from a health perspective they certainly don’t.

The Super Smoothie contains the following ingredients:

Ingredients

Fruit
Banana and Blueberries

Seeds
Sunflower, Pumpkin, and Chia

Nuts
(That’s what it says on the board)

‘Super foods’
Acai, Sacha Inchi, Maca, Raw Cacao nibs, and Lucuma.

Milk
Hemp

Ingredient count

12+
(due to the ‘nuts’)

Cost

$12
(you can add a shot of Vitamin C or Multivitamins for $2 extra)

Presentation

5/10

My Super Smoothie was a lavender colour (due to the Blueberries and Acai), and was presented in a plastic takeaway cup. I would have preferred that it had come out in a glass – as I was having it there.

Recipe and Taste

6/10

I didn’t add the shot of vitamins, as I didn’t think it was necessary. Wasn’t I shelling out $12 for a Super Smoothie, for all the nutrients it already contained?

I could detect the banana and perhaps the blueberry. Although I might have imagined it because of the colour? Unfortunately, I couldn’t pick anything else out of the mix.

Note: I’m giving them a slightly higher score here than I might have normally, as this smoothie could have easily tasted really bad with the number of ingredients it contained.  I’m also rating them higher as they used fruit and lucuma powder to sweeten their smoothie, rather than adding maple syrup, agave syrup, honey, or coconut sugar. So technically it is still a smoothie and not a dessert!

Satiation and Wellbeing

4/10

I would have expected my Super Smoothie to fill me up for at least 2 hours (with all its carbs, protein and fat), but it didn’t.  I was hungry again after about 20mins. And FYI:  I’ve tested it twice now! I also didn’t notice any significant increase in my energy levels or mood.

Overall Rating

on Wise Cicada’s Super Smoothie:

5/10

 While this smoothie may have cost $12, it wasn’t worth that much to me.

More ingredients makes good business sense

While the Wise Cicada Super Smoothie has enough ingredients for three smoothies,  you can see why they bung it all together – from a business point of view:

01—People expect this
from a health food cafe

They think the more ingredients in it the better it is for your health!

02—You get your money's worth

When you see all the superfoods and other ingredients in the recipe, it makes it look like you’re getting value-for-money.

03—You couldn’t afford
to make this at home

The more exotic the items in each smoothie, the less likely you are of being able to make this smoothie for yourself at home.

So basically, what I’m trying to say is… don’t try this at home!

You don’t have to aspire to this. The Super Smoothie is simply fun to experiment with when looking for a spot to eat.

Lisa
Says:

It is unnecessary to have more than five ingredients in a single smoothie.

All a smoothie needs to have is a protein, a carb, and some fat for it to be a meal. From here you could add one or two extras to give it a little extra ‘somethin sumthin’.

I believe that in any one ‘dish’ you should be able to taste at least 3-5 ingredients.

Having fewer ingredients (in more potent amounts), in the Super Smoothie, would have been tastier, better digested, and more satiating.

Having 12+ ingredients in a smoothie is total overkill!

Lisa's deconstructed Super Smoothie:

I’ve taken the Wise Cicada Super Smoothie and applied my ‘Keep It Simple Sweetie’ (K.I.S.S) guide to eating  to it (Click here to read more). Essentially I took out everything that was surplus to requirement. I was left with the following:

Banana, Sunflower Seeds, Almonds, Maca powder, and Hemp Milk1

Note: I left the Maca powder in for a little extra somethin’ somethin’

Banana — 1 x large ripe banana
Sunflower seeds — ‘3 fingers worth’
Almonds — 2 lots of  ‘3 fingers worth’ (see image below)
Maca — 1–2 heaped tsps
Hemp milk — 250ml

'3 fingers' of almonds. You'll need 2x this amount for the smoothie

There are only 5 ingredients in my smoothie

Lisa's deconstructed Super Smoothie

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