Fawaky Burst Adds a Splash of Color to the Eastside

 

Just two years ago, Muhammad Edwards was selling juice out of the back of his truck at a gas station. Today, the New Jersey native owns a storefront on Mayfield Road in South Euclid, a juice bar in Akron’s Summit Mall, a food truck and trailer, and supplies his product to Naturally Gifted Fitness Center on Lee Road in Cleveland Heights. 

 

“It was the middle of the winter. It was cold. You know how Cleveland gets with the snow. We’ve got on snowsuits, big thick coats, and I’m walking up to people like, ‘Do you want to buy a healthy juice?’” Edwards laughs, thinking back to the beginnings of his business, Fawaky Burst. No matter what the weather was like outside, Edwards wanted to provide his neighbors and friends with the nutrition they deserved.  

 

Edwards, who spent his collegiate years in Miami playing basketball, was familiar with the juicing lifestyle as well as the benefits of nutritious smoothies and liquid elixirs to increase athletic performance. His friends at the gym came around once they got a taste. “My friends would be curious about what it was,” he says, explaining their initial reaction. “It led to, ‘Let me have some!’ or ‘Make me one!’, and ‘This is good, make me some more!’ Next thing you know, I’m making cases of juices for different people at different times.”

 

“The wheels got to turning,” explains Edwards. “I had to figure out a way that I could increase the revenue and expand the brand. What I decided to do was build a fruit stand. I bought a slushie machine and a couple of blenders. I’d get a pineapple and core the inside out of the pineapple, put the slushie or smoothie into it, decorate it, and serve it to the people! That’s how I initially got my start and my claim to fame as ‘The Juiceman’”.  

 

Edwards’ newest and most expansive location in South Euclid mixes the tropical and fresh flavors of his ingredients with an urban islander aesthetic. The tables and chairs inside Fawaky (which means “fruit” in Arabic) look like barrels afloat in the dining room; the service counter, painted orange and splattered with glitter sealed by resin, stands out like sparkling sand on a neon beach. A mural commissioned by a local graffiti artist takes up the south wall of the shop.

 

Metaphorically speaking, Fawaky Burst is an island amidst a strip of fast food eateries that have gone without a healthy alternative—until now. Offering wholesome, fresh food options like wraps, salads, and crepes to the community isn’t the only way that Edwards gives back. “I believe in the power of giving; helping people who cannot help themselves,” he says. 

 

“The food truck increases my mobility so that I can get to different places at different times,” he explains. Leftover produce from their truck is taken to men and women’s shelters in the area. They also work with the Harvard and Miles Community Centers to put on events. With one stop of his truck, Edwards can magically turn a food desert into a lush and tropical paradise with affordable products. 

 

Fawaky Burst’s juices and smoothies range in price from $5 to $9 dollars based on size, number of ingredients—and if you’ll be drinking it from a pineapple or not. For Gather in Glenville, Edwards is excited to make a splash. “I want to show up and show out!” he says. With energizing sweet treats served from fruit vessels, you’ll be able to spot Fawaky Burst from either end of The 105!

photographs by Breanna Kulkin

Rachel Hunt