When Juice Crafters came to town six years ago it brought new options for juices, smoothies and bowls. Now owners Jonathan and Carol Goldwasser have created a new brand and concept with Parakeet Juicery and Parakeet Café. While Juice Crafters changed its name to Parakeet Juicery, the couple also recently opened Parakeet Café in the former location of Café 1134. Parakeet Café offers a variety of of breakfast and lunch dishes with gluten free, vegan, paleo and keto choices in a bright, cheerful environment.
While at first the Goldwassers opened Juice Crafters as a reflection to their daughter’s strict food needs, the concept behind Parakeet Café is more of a celebration of her improved health. Their new business endeavors show the happiness in their lives. “Our daughter had a super strict diet with lots of raw foods and mainly vegan. The Juicery made a lot of sense. As our daughter grew …she was craving things I wasn’t giving her, like meat,” said Carol Goldwasser. “When you have a sick body, a plant based diet makes sense; with a healthy body you can add food variety with super clean, best quality.”
The Goldwassers are originally from Mexico City. Jonathan managed a family optical business while Carol was a lawyer with a multinational law firm. After their first daughter was born Carol took a break and went to cooking school. A few years later the couple’s second daughter, Michelle, was born with a rare disease. The couple moved to the United States to receive better care for her. Despite putting their daughter in the hands of the doctors they decided to feed her only healthy natural foods and it made a huge difference on her recovery. From that struggle the Juice Crafters brand was born.
Based on their daughter’s better health and the fact that often customers asked for more than just juices, the couple took the next step by creating a café where “customers can sit down, celebrate food, which is more like a homemade meal,” explained Goldwasser.
The Parakeet Café in Coronado is the latest of four cafés by the same name in San Diego with locations in Little Italy, La Jolla, Del Mar. (The same four cities where the couple had opened Juice Crafters years ago. All the Juice Crafters are now Parakeet Juicery.)
The Goldwasssers jumped at the opportunity to open a Parakeet Café in Coronado. Their decision was made after the pandemic had already started, but they had faith the business would succeed. And from the first few days since the café’s opening it is obvious that locals love the concept. “The part I enjoy about the business is how much attention to details we put into it - the decor, how we present our food. We want customers to enjoy a healthy meal and nourish their body and soul,” she said.
The menu offers drinks like coffees, espresso drinks, tea, matcha and signature sips like Lavander Latte, Mayan Mocha and Salted Maple Latte. Wellness Lattes are made with functional superfoods to which you can add espresso shots. More choices include Beauty Tonic Tea, Turmeric Latte and Magic Mushroom Matcha.
Breakfast is served all day and features Healthy Breakfast Bowl, Belgian Waffles, Eggs Benedict on Toast and Organic Eggs and Salmon.
Goldwasser’s personal favorite is the Avocado Toast to which you can add an organic egg, falafel, or beet-cured smoke salmon. More toast choices include the Mushroom - made with spinach pesto, white truffle oil, goat cheese and arugula.
If you go to the café ready for a bigger meal, try the Roasted Greens Bowl which as the name implies has chockfull of vegetables. Add a poached egg, grilled avocado or sub grains for green. For customers who crave meat try the Grilled Chicken Burger and the Wild Salmon Burger. For those who prefer salads try the Golden Goddess Salad to which you can add chicken, egg or grilled salmon or the Kale Caesar Salad. “All the dressings are made in house. Our bowls are very good. We want to be inclusive, if you are healthy you’re not sacrificing the flavor. We use amazing ingredients we are very creative in bringing different ingredients to the table,” said Goldwasser.
The parakeet theme can be seen throughout the café especially with one accent wall full of the cheery birds. “Everything started with the story of our daughter’s challenge. [The café] is a happy ending, super cute, fun and brings a smile to our face. It’s a celebration in a joyful environment,” she said.
The café also serves pastries that can be enjoyed with coffee or tea. “I’m super proud [of the pastries], there is so much talent in the kitchen,” said Goldwasser.
“We use high quality ingredients, so many vegan and gluten free options, some without refined sugars. There is something for everyone. I know what’s in the food. I love it…this is my way of contributing to the universe…I want people to have a better relationship with food and be happy,” she said.
Jill Champion of La Jolla was sipping a mug of Immunitea made with turmeric, ginger, lemon and honey. She said she is a customer at the La Jolla location and came to visit a friend in Coronado. “It’s medicinal and delicious,” she said.
“We’re inviting everyone to the party. Whatever dietary needs you have you’re not sacrificing anything,” said Goldwasser.
As in the past, when Café 1134 was in business, seating on the sidewalk facing Orange Avenue and the back patio are still options.
Parakeet Café, 1134 Orange Avenue. Call 619-675-0104 or log on parakeetcafe.com Hours: 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. everyday. All dishes are served throughout the day. Dinner will be available in the future. The Café has a liquor license and serves wine and kambucha.