Toastique brings gourmet toast, smoothie and juice to Balboa Island
Balboa Island in Newport Beach is home to some of the area’s oldest and most iconic businesses, like Sugar n’ Spice, selling frozen bananas since 1945, and the Balboa Island Ferry, which has shuttled motorists and passengers to and from the island for more than 100 years. But resident Lesley Capolino thought it was time to add something new to her beloved Balboa neighborhood.
“We are Balboa Island residents, my husband Tony and I, and we have just come to love Balboa,” said Capolino, “but we noticed the marina needed a little bit of a zhuzh.”
Capolino has teamed up with her husband, Anthony Capolino, alongside relatives and longtime Newport Beach residents Lyndon Baptiste and Rhea Cayenne to found Orange Seed LLC, a company investing in high-caliber food and beverage brands. Capolino said the group came across Toastique, a gourmet toast, smoothie and juice franchise, and felt like it was the right fit for their community.
“We wanted healthy options,” said Capolino. “It is something new to bring to the island to capture the breakfast and lunch market.”
Located at 226 Marine Avenue, Toastique is now open in a space formerly occupied by a Starbucks, serving fruit smoothies, cold-press juices and acai bowls.
The Toastique concept was developed in Washington D.C. in 2018 by founder Brianna Keefe and has locations in Colorado, Florida, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Utah and Virginia. Balboa Island’s Toastique is the first on the West Coast, ahead of a forthcoming location in Bakersfield opening this winter.
Toastique takes its name from the gourmet toast options they offer, like its dressed-up version of avocado toast, dubbed the avocado smash, which piles avocado, watermelon radish, marinated tomatoes, chili oil and microgreens on multigrain toast. Other fancy options include the spicy crab toast, with lump crab, melted swiss and fontina cheese, sriracha aioli, tomato, bibb lettuce, jalapeño, microgreens and a twist of lemon served on rustico toast.
“For me, my favorite is the Tuscan tuna,” Capolino said of the toast made with a tuna salad dressed with sundried tomatoes, capers, scallions, herb vinaigrette, balsamic glaze, kalamata olives, tomato and bibb lettuce.
There are also acai bowls on the menu, ranging from the simple, like the OG acai topped with blueberries, bananas, strawberries and granola, to the inventive, like the black mystique, made of activated charcoal, berries, coconut water and topped with granola, kiwi, coconut and Goji berries.
Capolino said even the green juices and smoothies will win over tough critics, like herself.
“I normally don’t like green juices, but our green machine is so good,” Capolino said of the green smoothie that blends banana, pineapple, mango, spinach, kale with hemp seeds, flax seeds, lime and coconut water.
Orange Seed LLC has plans to open more Toastique locations in Orange County’s coastal cities, but mostly Capolino said she hopes to offer something new to the Balboa community.
“Balboa is a very special place with an island feel in a big city,” said Capolino. “I like that the Toastique idea is so unique and something new to bring to the island.”
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