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Restaurant lunch highlights:

Tropical Smoothie Cafe, NW 16th Blvd.

Tropical Smoothie Cafe, NW 16th Blvd.

Green salsa heaven wrapped, bowled, sandwiched

By Mike Sanford, GLOB Editor

TSCsfMH600My daughter and OGC Therapy Center Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant Jana Sanford Heller texted me to meet her for lunch at the Tropical Smoothie on the corner of NW 16th Blvd. and NW 43rd St.

Real Estate agents like to use the term LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION when discussing the ideak property for a quick, profitable sale. Excuse the GLOB Master for bragging but the Tropical Smoothie lunch stop being discussed is an eight minute walk from my Thornebrook apartment front door. That fact is my fellow GLOBers makes this lunch with my daughter a close to perfect lunch.

Also please consider the fact I have never been disappointed with a TS lunch:



zzGLOBbullet I've enjoyed several of the Tropical Smoothie breakfast sandwiches with the Southwest Breakfast Wrap ($3.99) of eggs, grilled chicken, pepper jack, tomatoes, spinach & chipotle mayo being a mighty tasty sandwich.

zzGLOBbullet The Caribbean Jerk Chicken Bowl ($7.29) comprised of rice, black beans, cheddar, roasted pineapple salsa, romaine & spicy jerk sauce is a tart & tasty economical lunch that hits the lunch spot and the pocket book in just the right spot.



Jana opted for the TS Hummus Veggie Bowl, ($7.29), of smashed avocado, pepper jack cheese, a romaine, kale & spinach blend, rice, black beans, pickled red onions, tomatoes & lite ranch. Much applause to Tropical Smoothie for creating lunch entrees that are just the right size for lunch. Nothing to take back to work, to share, or throw away.

"This is an awesome lunch dad. The flavors are really delicious, the crunch of the fresh veggies is great," Jana said. "Plus Tropical Smoothie is 10 minutes from my work on NW 53rd Ave," Jana added.

Tropical Smoothie has expanded their menu to include two interesting quesadillas in the Island Chicken Quesadilla, and the Santa Fe Chicken Quesadilla, ($6.49). These yummy lunch bites include their own specific sauce with the Island sauce being a red spicy pepper sauce. The Santa Fe Sauce is a delicious green pepper salsa I will include on any, and everything I eat at Tropical Smothie form this lunch forward.


This lunch I selected was the Santa Fe Chicken Quesadilla that included black beans, roasted red pepper & onion, queso blanco, cheddar, a smoked cheese blend & roasted tomato salsa. I substituted the green salsa after trying the tomato salsa, however future visits will have me enjoying both the red and the green salsas. YUM! What spicy, additional flavors. The folded in half, toasted wrap contained an explosion of pronounced bits of flavor with the cheese blends and the queso taking center stage in a delicious lunch combination.

I had asked about side items for my lunch and the server pointed to a rack of chips, and a variety of fruit that seemingly had a giant stenciled NOT FOR YOU on them for this diabetic.

That is a good thing. The extra large quesadilla that could have been shared was plenty for lunch. I'm going back to Tropical Smoothie. There are many lunch entrees left that are screaming out for that delicious red, and green salsa.





It is true sometimes convenience can be 70% of the lunchtime equation. The GLOB Master got behind schedule one morning recently and missed his obligatory 6:30 trek for breakfast. Thus my blood sugar devils, er, ugh, levels were screaming out 'FEED ME.'

I quickly thought of the Tropical Smoothie Café Caribbean Jerk Chicken Bowl with rice, black beans, cheddar, roasted pineapple salsa, romaine & spicy jerk sauce.

The Tropical Smoothie Café is one of two locations in Gainesville and eight walking minutes from my front door located on the corner of NW 43rd St. and NW 16th Blvd.

avocoladasmoothie300This bowl of yummy goodness is a perfect lunch of crunch greens, healthy veggies, and an allowable portion of yummy chicken protein to get me through my diabetes - number counting - portion control madness. Thank you Tropical Smoothie Café and your Caribbean Jerk Chicken Bowl with rice, black beans, cheddar, roasted pineapple salsa, romaine & spicy jerk sauce ($6.49).

The crispy lettuce and veggies, creates a delicious combination of a pleasing looking lunchtime palette of ingredients including roasted chicken (Protein), shredded cheddar cheese, (Protein), and small portion of black beans (Proteins) and white rice (a devil like Carbohydrate IMO), and candied apples (RBC really bad carbs). A side of Spicy Jerk Sauce was tangy, spicy touch to my lunch.

The TSJCB flavors were fresh, and astounding. The crunch of the lettuce melded nicely with the roasted chicken and tangy jerk sauce. "I should do this every day," I thought to myself as i stared at the tabletop card depicting a yummy looking, green, Avocolada Smoothie with avocado, pineapple, spinach, kale, coconut & lime. 

OMG GLOBers!  I could walk for an hour to enjoy, share one of those yummy looking smoothies for lunch. 






Breakfast sandwich works for GLOB Master

By Mike Sanford, GLOB Editor

TSCsfMH600The new Tropical Smoothie on NW 23rd Blvd. near Leonardo's Pizza in the Pan serves breakfast all day, and the GLOB Master thinks the Southwest Omelet Wrap is at the top of the TS menu. How good is the Tropical Smoothie breakfast wrap, GLOBers? It is a breakfast sandwich that rivals my Bagel Bakery breakfast triumvirate, and it is half the price of a bagel, small muffin, and large soda.

I'm thinking I am going to like this fresh fruit, 7:00 am breakfast addition at the corner of NW 43rd St. and 16th Blvd.



There is an order counter and a few tables to lunch on. Kudos to the TS franchise designer for using very large images on the wall. I learned in the old newspaper days an average photograph will become very dramatic if you can make it large enough. It works at this restaurant.

The dining area is clean and the counter to place order is smart and trendy. A big thank you to the smoothie gods for figuring out how to reduce the noise of multiple blenders grinding, crunching, and smoothing practically anything in sight.

Right up there with very good entrees and smoothies are the Tropical Smoothie staffers manning this breakfast/lunch stop.



From left: Sheena Cooper, TS Manager Amber Johnson, and Ashley Long have the morning grind figured out. Now, granted, I am there on the way early side of 8 am. So recently when the tune MY SHARONNA blared out of the speaker extremely loudly, it was cool see Amber and her staff getting down and doing serious dancing–WOOO HOOO!

TROPsmoDOCKTropical Smoothie specializes in liquid lunches so GLOB Content Editor Lynn Dirk and I decided on two smoothies described as Supercharged Smoothies. The healthy smoothies that didn't appear as too sugary are the Avocolada, with avocado, pineapple, spinach, kale, coconut & lime juice ($4.99) and the Peanut Paradise Smoothie with peanut butter, banana, non-fat yogurt, and choice of protein ($4.99). Protein choices are whey, soy, or pea. Smoothies come in 24-ounce cups.

The smoothies were very good. Lynn suggested the peanut for me as I always need a little more protein in my bones and muscles. I added whey for additional protein and this was a very yummy drink. The banana flavor was pronounced but I could taste the peanut butter. This smoothie was very easy to drink, and I surprised Lynn when I quickly drank the entire smoothie. And Lynn drank hers just as fast as I drank mine, maybe even faster. The one thing she wondered is whether the smoothies included any fiber because after the foam dissipated, the smoothie did not appear to have any fiber and that is a very important part of the nutrition of fruits and veggies. Research needed!

There are 11 smoothies including the Paradise Point and Mango Magic ($3.99). Super Food Smoothies include the Pomegranate Plunge and the Caribbean C-Burst ($4.99). There are also four Indulgent Smoothies.



There is a complete Tropical Smoothie menu at the restaurant link below. The prices are very reasonable, including a Smoothie & a Half Special where you get any smoothie and your choice of half sandwich or half salad ($6.99). A better deal is to add a 24-oz smoothie to any lunch menu item: flatbread, sandwich, wrap, salad, or two tacos for an additional $3.00. For kids, there are 12-oz Smoothies.

I offered half of my Southwest Omelet wrap with eggs, grilled chicken, pepper jack, tomatoes, spinach and chipotle mayo in a toasted flour tortilla ($4.75) to Lynn and she said it was good but unremarkable.



The surprise ingredient for the GLOB Master was the Chipotle Mayo. This luscious condiment melted down into my wrap seemingly touching every other sandwich ingredient. The price at $4.75 is also surprising.

The feeling of satisfaction from the smaller than usual – for the GLOB master -- breakfast prize satisfies my morning food cravings in a very good way. I'm going back to Tropical Smoothie. Maybe I could talk Amber into a Southwest Omelet Wrap BOGO deal if I show her what a good dancer I am . . .

The Pluses and Minuses of the Tropical Smoothie Cafe:

Tropical Smoothie Cafe (+) indicators: Good, cheap breakfast sandwiches. The Caribbean Jerk Bowl sound sinteresting.

Tropical Smoothie Cafe  (-) indicators: None noted.

Be the first to offer your GLOB comments, lunch photographs and opinions about Tropical Smoothie Cafe .  Please identify your opinions with a PLUS SIGN (+) for positive comments, and a MINUS SIGN (-) for your negative comments.  - THANKS!

Last modified onTuesday, 09 April 2019 04:23

Additional Info

  • Phone Number: 352 379-9988
  • Address: 4123-4217 NW 16th Blvd.
  • Urban GLOB Location: NW 16th Avenue
  • Latitude: 29.673110
  • Longitude: -82.388577
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