Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Review of Ellenos Real Greek Yogurt of Seattle, WA



Fro-yo girl here. Ellenos Real Greek Yogurt opened at Pike Place Market in Seattle in late 2013. Family owned, their probiotic Greek yogurt is handcrafted using traditional methods and local ingredients, including local milk and local honey. 

The yogurt is all natural and does not use thickeners, stabilizers, or gelatins. They’ve been expanding their distribution to markets in the Pacific Northwest area (mostly around Seattle). The yogurt can be topped with lemon curd, marionberry pie, lemon curd, passionfruit, coffee, lemon cheesecake, mango, blueberry matcha, pumpkin pie, rhubarb, etc.

* Ellenos Lemon Curd Greek yogurt: The yogurt is super thick, smooth, fluffy, rich (full fat), and mildly tangy. It’s rich and sweet enough to feel decadent and appropriate for dessert. The lemon curd was very sweet. The yogurt was sweeter and less tangy than my favorite yogurt (Smari). Would I try it again? Yes, with a tangier topping.

Ingredients: Ellenos plain Greek yogurt, Ellenos lemon curd (water, cane sugar, eggs, butter, freshly squeezed lemon juice)

One serving is 4 ounces, with 212 calories, 10 grams of fat, and 15 grams of sugar.

Ellenos offers shipping (order from their website) and can be found at Uwajimaya, PCC Natural Markets, Tully’s Coffee, Metropolitan Market, Zupan’s Markets, Hilltop Red Apple, Feast Market and other markets.

4 out of 5 stars.

* ELLENOS: 1500 Pike Place, Seattle, WA 98101

You know you love me. X0 X0, fro-yo girl.

Looking for more frozen yogurt news, discussion boards, and resources? Check out the International Frozen Yogurt Association website at http://internationalfrozenyogurt.com/. The IFYA is the independent voice of the frozen yogurt industry.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Innovative Froyo Shop Spotlight: CrèmeBee in Alhambra, CA



Fro-yo girl here. CrèmeBee’s offerings aren’t innovative in Asia but they are in California. Their offerings reflect several Asian dessert trends: (1) raw honey with organic milk soft serve, (2) cotton candy on top of milk tea or soft serve, (3) nice looking parfaits.

The raw honey with organic milk soft serve was popularized by Honeymee in SoCal. Honeymee opened its first location in LA’s Koreatown. CrèmeBee’s soft serve is organic frozen yogurt; Honeymee’s is ice cream.

The cotton candy is made to order which makes a difference because packaged cotton candy tastes awful. There are two flavors: blue raspberry and purple grape. They make their own marshmallows and they’re cut into cute shapes (white clouds and yellow moons). Other toppings include raw honey, honeycomb, honey boba, pudding, honey castella cake, caramel sauce, chocolate sauce…sensing the honey theme? The plain CrèmeBee is served with raw honey ($3.95).



There are eight creations/parfaits to choose from ($3.95-$5.75) and one flavor of organic soft serve frozen yogurt. They also sell honey flavored teas and floats.




* Cloud 9 with blue raspberry cotton candy, cloud marshmallows and raw honey ($5.75): It’s super cute with that big blue cotton candy cloud. To eat it, you remove the cotton candy and put it on the tray. Tear off some cotton candy and eat it with or separate from your frozen yogurt. The frozen yogurt is plain/milk flavored. It isn’t tangy at all – it’s sweet, creamy and smooth but not as thick as Honeymee’s. The cotton candy is super light and has a hint of blue raspberry flavor. The soft marshmallows were really good – not as sweet as the packaged kind. The portion of frozen yogurt is small and there was a huge hole in the middle but with the cotton candy it felt like two desserts.

The shop is mostly white with a cute bee/honeycomb theme. I think it used to be another froyo shop called Splash Tea & Yogurt and before that A Tea Yogurt and Bluecherry Yogurt. That's four froyo places in the same spot.


CremeBee is having a grand opening celebration on August 29, 2015. The first 50 people will get free froyo. Everyone else will get 25% off that day. Doors open at 1:30 PM.

You know you love me. X0 X0, fro-yo girl.

Rating: 4/5

* CREMEBEE, 137 W Main St., Alhambra, CA 91801

Looking for more frozen yogurt news, discussion boards, and resources? Check out the International Frozen Yogurt Association website at http://internationalfrozenyogurt.com/. The IFYA is the independent voice of the frozen yogurt industry.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Froyo Scene in Portland, Oregon


Fro-yo girl here. I recently went to Portland, Oregon, which of course means that I had froyo on my mind. 

Years ago I had froyo at Skinnidip in downtown Portland and at the YoCream Company Store. Skinnidip had four flavors and were counter serve, very much inspired by the Pinkberry model. This was before the influx of self-serve froyo shops. With Dannon YoCream’s froyo plant in Portland, YoCream supplied many of Portland’s froyo shops. Portland is also the home to the YoCream Frozen Yogurt Company Store and Showroom (10209 NE Cascades Pkwy), located close to YoCream factory in Northeast Portland.

The YoCream Frozen Yogurt Company Store at Cascade Station serves YoCream froyo and it’s a clean, bright shop that also sells YoCream merchandise and carries Joe Froyo, a blended iced coffee beverage made with Dannon YoCream frozen yogurt. This is the only YoCream company store and it opened in 2009.

The one-stop shopping retailer Fred Meyer, which started in Portland, recently added a self-serve froyo section to their Hawthorne location. They serve Dannon YoCream froyo. (see previous post).

About a year ago, Eb & Bean (1425 NE Broadway, @ebandbean) opened in Irvington/Lloyd District. Flavors, many of them creative and seasonal, are handmade with local organic milk, handmade flavors and artisanal toppings. In their first year they created 72 new seasonal flavors. 

More organic froyo is coming. The Maple Parlor (3538 SE Hawthorne Blvd., @themapleparlor) is replacing Swirl Frozen Yogurt. It will offer organic all natural soft serve, including tart froyo, made with locally sourced ingredients. While they were hoping to open on July 1st, they haven’t opened yet. The Swirl sign was still up.

Eb & Bean is not the first organic, handmade froyo shop in town. Bleuet (2007-2010) opened its doors in the Alphabet District in 2007, offering European style organic tart frozen yogurt in a boutique setting. Cool Harry's Yogurt (2010-2013) was the first froyo cart in town; they served organic, local froyo and toppings in downtown Portland. I visited Portland a few times while Cool Harry's was still in business but it wasn't open year-round so I never had a chance to try it.

Although Portland has its share of froyo spots (I counted 18 of them – and no national chains), we didn’t see many in the neighborhoods we visited. I also didn’t see any at Portland International Airport. 

Save on froyo at Skinnidip with Groupon.

You know you love me. X0 X0, fro-yo girl.

Looking for more frozen yogurt news, discussion boards, and resources? Check out the International Frozen Yogurt Association website at http://internationalfrozenyogurt.com/. The IFYA is the independent voice of the frozen yogurt industry.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Yogurtland Candy Crush Round 4: Cupcake Carnival, Lemonade Lake, Red Fish Spoons




Fro-yo girl here. It’s Monday and time for the next round of new Yogurtland Candy Crush inspired flavors and a new collectible spoon.

Lemonade Lake (sorbet) is “a flavor so fresh and thirst-quenching, you’ll want to dive into it. Lemonade Lake is a delicious summertime mix of sweet and tart that goes swimmingly together.” It’s made with real lemon and is gluten free. The taste brought me back to childhood, specifically to Country Time lemonade. It’s on the sweeter side for lemonade and icier (but there’s no dairy).

Recommended toppings: Candy fish, gummy bears, Fruity Pebbles, popping boba, strawberries

Cupcake Carnival: “Prepare to bask in the creamy sweet goodness of the Cupcake Carnival. The taste of smooth, yellow cake batter will make you crave the Big Top!” I usually don’t like cake batter froyo and this one was just too sweet for me - way too sweet. It was very creamy.

Recommended toppings: Mochi, cheesecake, Nilla wafers

The new collectible , limited edition red fish spoons say Divine on the handle.

In the Candy Crush game, the Jelly Fish booster adds jelly fish candies to the game. In later levels, jelly fish is a special mystery candy that will swim off the screen when activated, and be followed by three new jelly fish that eat three squares at random that contain a jelly.

The next new flavors come out on August 31: Butterscotch and Minty Meadow. The last collectible candy spoon features a round blue candy.

Visit YogurtlandSweetTreats.com for your chance to win free yogurt for a year or an unlimited cup of froyo. Ten people a day win an unlimited cup.

Remember the flavors and spoons are available while supplies last. The purple flower spoons ran out quickly at some Yogurtland locations.

You know you love me. X0 X0, fro-yo girl.

Looking for more frozen yogurt news, discussion boards, and resources? Check out the International Frozen Yogurt Association website at http://internationalfrozenyogurt.com/. The IFYA is the independent voice of the frozen yogurt industry.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Innovative Froyo Shop Spotlight: Eb & Bean in Portland, OR




Fro-yo girl here. I’ve had my eye on Eb & Bean since they first opened in June 2014 – their use of local organic milk, handmade flavors and artisanal toppings definitely appealed to me. They also offer vegan and gluten free froyo and toppings. It was my #1 Portland must see.

Their organic probiotic frozen yogurt is rBST free, GMO free and 100% natural. The thin, tall spirals of froyo on Instagram always look amazing. 

They carry three everyday flavors (Vanilla, Chocolate, Tart) and special seasonal flavors. During my visit these were Ginger Caramel, Lemon Marionberry Buttermilk and Salty Pistachio (Non-dairy, made with almond milk). They’re always creating new flavors like Apricot Crème Fraiche, Grasshopper Pie, Garden Mint, Cardamom Caramel, etc. They haven’t had any seasonal flavor repeats. In their first year, they served 72 flavors.

Toppings are housemade or sourced from small batch local producers like Pinkleton’s salted vanilla caramel corn, Cary’s of Oregon almond toffee crumbles, and Honey Mama’s cacao nectar crumbles.  The toppings aren’t what you’d find at your typical froyo shop. They have Bakeshop cookies, streusel, candy, Jacobsen salt, nuts, local honey, candied ginger, marionberry compote, bourbon sauce, non-dairy magic shell, cinnamon sugar potato donuts, honeyed whipped cream and the list goes on. I wanted to buy the toppings and bring some home.

Prices: Small $3.75, Large $4.75, Tots $2.75 (for kids only), Pints $6, toppings $1 for the first topping

The tart flavor was mild, lightly sweetened, and milky – it tasted more like milk than tangy yogurt. The tang wasn’t there but it had a smooth, light, refreshing quality. I liked the lemon marionberry buttermilk flavor better – it was light, fruity and smooth. It tasted more like berries than lemon and the flavor wasn’t so intense that it overwhelmed the yogurt flavor. The texture isn’t creamy but it is smooth and on the icier side. The salty pistachio (non-dairy) was very sweet and it had so much pistachio flavor that I couldn’t taste the almond milk.

The shop is sleek, minimalist yet still cute (that polar bear, the wall of paper mache froyo cones and cups). There’s one communal wood table, kids’ tables and counter seating by the window. They sell Eb & Bean t-shirts – I want one. 

Cups and spoons are compostable, of course. Pick up a frequent buyer card.

You know you love me. X0 X0, fro-yo girl.

Rating: 4/5

* EB & BEAN: 1425 NE Broadway, Portland, OR 97232

Looking for more frozen yogurt news, discussion boards, and resources? Check out the International Frozen Yogurt Association website at http://internationalfrozenyogurt.com/. The IFYA is the independent voice of the frozen yogurt industry.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Joe Froyo at YoCream Frozen Yogurt Company Store and Other Retailers



Fro-yo girl here. I heard about Joe Froyo, the new coffee beverage made with Dannon frozen yogurt, awhile ago and knew that they carried it at the YoCream company store in Portland, OR. I had the chance to try it at the Reliant Expo2015 and then again in a retail setting at the YoCream shop.

Joe Froyo isn’t coffee flavored frozen yogurt blended with ice. It’s 100% Arabica coffee blended with proprietary Dannon frozen yogurt. It’s similar to Starbucks Frappuccino – both are blended coffee beverages with tiny bits of ice and dairy. Joe Froyo is made with frozen yogurt so it’s healthier than Frappuccinos. It doesn’t taste like frozen yogurt but it does have live and active cultures and it’s nonfat. Frappuccinos have many more flavors and toppings/finishes.

I’m not a Frappuccino drinker (I prefer boba milk tea) but I did compare the two products and Joe Froyo has a stronger coffee flavor. It’s on the icy side, like a granita. The new “Flavor Station” allows you to swirl in 3 custom flavors: mocha, caramel and vanilla. I didn’t see a Flavor Station at YoCream or the option to add whipped cream. The machine was behind the register and the product is dispensed by an employee (you choose the size).

Joe Froyo comes with a compact countertop dispensing machine which comes with the program at no added cost (with a 60 case per quarter minimum). No blending or mixing is required; simply pour the product from the carton into the Spaceman dispensing machine.

Want to find Joe Froyo? Here’s the map of where you can get your Joe: http://joefroyo.com/get-your-joe/

Retailers interested in Joe Froyo should visit for additional information: http://joefroyo.com/retailers/

You know you love me. X0 X0, fro-yo girl.

Looking for more frozen yogurt news, discussion boards, and resources? Check out the International Frozen Yogurt Association website at http://internationalfrozenyogurt.com/. The IFYA is the independent voice of the frozen yogurt industry.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Evolution Fresh Yogurt Inspired by Dannon Review



Fro-yo girl here. Starbucks-owned Evolution Fresh and Dannon just launched a new line of Greek yogurt, Evolution Fresh Fruit on the Bottom Greek Yogurts inspired by Dannon. You can find Evolution Fresh Greek Yogurt at thousands of grocery stores nationwide. The new yogurts feature real fruit on the bottom, topped with Greek nonfat yogurt with no added flavors, artificial sweeteners, colors or preservatives. They emphasize simplicity of ingredients.

Available flavors:
  • Black Cherry
  • Blueberry
  • Pineapple Passion Fruit
  • Raspberry Blackberry

Ralph’s had all four new flavors at the retail price, $1.69 per single serve cup. I like the clear square container that makes it easy to see the fruit on the bottom. There’s room left in the cup for you to add your own toppings.

One serving, a 5.3 oz cup, contains 120 calories, 0 grams of fat, 11 grams of protein, 16 grams of sugar.

Ingredients (Black Cherry): Cultured grade A milk, black cherries, cane sugar, water, black cherry puree, rice starch, lemon puree. The milk is rBST free. The yogurt has active yogurt cultures.

I tried the Black Cherry. The cherry flavor is not strong. Even the cherry pieces (there are a few big pieces) didn’t have much flavor. However, the yogurt itself is good – thick, creamy, lightly sweetened and tangy.

I probably should have tried Raspberry Blackberry because it’s described as being tart.

For more information, visit http://www.evolutionfresh.com/yogurt

3.5 out of 5 stars.

You know you love me. X0 X0, fro-yo girl.

Looking for more frozen yogurt news, discussion boards, and resources? Check out the International Frozen Yogurt Association website at http://internationalfrozenyogurt.com/. The IFYA is the independent voice of the frozen yogurt industry.