Eat the Strip

La Bocca Juice

2446 Bank St, Ottawa, ON K1V 1A4

December 18, 2023 6:46 PM

By: Ameya Charnalia

A few months ago, I discovered La Bocca Juice, a Lebanese dessert shop located in the Towngate Shopping Centre on Bank Street.

The strip mall is one of our favourites, serving everything from classic shawarma at Shawarma Station to halal southern barbecue at Moe’s BBQ. Middle Eastern supermarkets are ubiquitous, serving mouth-watering dips, breads and much more.

One evening, a friend and I decided to pop into La Bocca to try a freshly squeezed juice. While I can’t recall which juice we ordered, I made a mental note to go back with Danielle, my partner and Eat the Strip co-writer.

We stopped by the other night to try the ashta fraisca.

For just over $10, we received a large portion of freshly cut fruit, raspberry-vanilla ice-cream and ashta drizzled with nuts and honey. Happy knowing we were getting some essential nutrients while indulging our sweet tooth, we appreciated the generous chunks of strawberry and banana.

The undisputed star of the dessert, however, was the ashta. It was our first time trying the clotted cream, which is used to make several desserts in the Middle East. Not too heavy, it served as a welcome alternative to canned whipped cream.

Ashta is a cream used across the Middle East in desserts
Ashta is a cream used across the Middle East in desserts

A generous portion of nuts and honey reminded us of the aftertaste of Lebanese baklava, one of our favourite desserts.

We were pleased to learn that La Bocca Juice is open till 11 p.m. most nights, ensuring we’ll be back—along with the usual late-night crowds it draws—to try some fresh juices, deserts and ashta.