Tropicana JuiceFood Bar
Tropicana Juice/Food Bar
Alongside South Melbourne Market dim sims‚ and dumplings in Tattersalls Lane‚ Tropicana Juice is fast becoming a Melbourne institution.
Many locals and visitors alike will be familiar with Tropicana's Elizabeth St store. Traveling along Elizabeth - perhaps on a tram from Flinders St to La Trobe - the store, with an abundance of oranges hanging from its shopfront, is a distinctive site.
Even better than the aesthetics of the entry however, the drinks and food on offer are first class. And, now the bar has found a location on Swanston St, it has moved that much closer to being a real mainstay in the minds of Melburnians.
What Tropicana does well is what so many of the iconic Melbourne eateries do well; high quality food, served up in a simple and friendly way. Tropicana nails this. For starters, there are their mainstays: the juice and smoothies on offer.
The writer would wish to say this bar has some familiar and recognisable favourites on the menu - but allover it perhaps doesn't. This is a place that clearly prides itself on drumming up some unusual combinations, and accordingly the menu reflects it.
Before further discussion of the menu is had, it should be said that the staff are very friendly and if your heart is set on a standard banana and honey shake, it would be made with a smile and without a second thought. Okay, onto the juicy stuff.
If you are keen on a Colombian breakfast - a shot of coffee, wheatgerm, muesli, banana and honey - Tropicana has you covered. So too if you would wish for a body builder - dates, banana, honey, tahini and museli. Beyond this, the listed drinks become easier to name - but also more mysterious. There is the green tea which, while the name sounds familiar, also features a mix of a 'secret recipe from Japan'. There is the mango colada, which again, does indeed feature mango but also a combo-mix from the Philippines. Finally, there is the South American. If Tropicana has a flagship smoothie, this is it. It is described simply as 'Top Secret' and 'the best smoothie on earth'.
Some may wonder whether there is the need for such a clandestine menu, but it adds to the fun of ordering. And the writer can confirm - having had the South American amongst others - there is indeed a sufficiently distinctive and unique taste to the drinks. All up then, save for the most worldly and well-traveled patron perhaps, it's likely an order of a 'secret' smoothie will deliver a new taste and potential exposure to a new favourite order.
While smoothies are the menus foundation, a wide variety of food is also offered. Alongside wraps and sandwiches, waffles are also offered! True, some may think a tropical smoothie and waffle makes an unlikely combo, but this is Melbourne. And for a bar such as Tropicana, doing a great deal to further boost Melbourne's status as a 'food city', tradition can surely give a bit of leeway.
207715 - 2023-06-16 06:02:44