Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Yogurtland to Celebrate National Frozen Yogurt Day on Feb. 4 w/ Free Fro-yo

Fro-yo girl here. National Frozen Yogurt Day is just a week away! Yogurtland is celebrating again with free fro-yo and toppings from 4- 7 PM on Feb. 4th. More than 200 Yogurtland locations across the country will be participating in the celebration. Guests will receive a commemorative cup and spoon.It looks like the spoon will be orange this year. Last year, Yogurtland served more than 1.2 million cups of free fro-yo on National Frozen Yogurt Day.

“National Frozen Yogurt Day allows us to thank our fans, and once again we look forward to serving them delicious yogurt with a wide range of toppings. This year we are proud to partner with Hershey’s to make National Frozen Yogurt Day a very sweet reward for our fans,” said Charlotte Lucich, director of marketing at Yogurtland.

“Guests are also invited to pass along the generosity. Through Yogurtland Cares, the company’s initiative to empower youth, Yogurtland is also supporting First Book, a national education non-profit. First Book provides new, high quality books and resources to kids in need. Yogurtland Cares will match donations in an effort to raise $20,000 to provide more than 8,000 new books to kids across the country. From Feb. 1 – Feb. 10, Yogurtland will match donations made at http://cares.yogurt-land.com.

The California Milk Advisory Board also sponsors Yogurtland’s National Frozen Yogurt Day celebration. For more information, visit www.yogurt-land.com.”

About Yogurtland
In 2006, Yogurtland opened its first location, and quickly popularized the self-serve frozen yogurt concept by offering the industry’s best quality frozen yogurt made from real California milk and served with a wide array of premium, popular toppings. Today, Yogurtland leads the industry with the finest smooth, creamy real yogurt and superior toppings where customers create and control their own flavor experience, all served in a clean, bright environment. Presently there are more than 200 locations across the U.S., Guam, Mexico, Venezuela and Australia with more than 50 additional locations scheduled to open over the next six months. For more information, visit http://www.yogurt-land.com or http://www.facebook.com/yogurtland.

About First Book
First Book has distributed more than 100 million books and educational resources to programs and schools serving children from low-income families throughout the United States and Canada.  By making new, high-quality books available on an ongoing basis, First Book is transforming the lives of children in need and elevating the quality of education. For more information, please visit First Book online or follow First Book’s latest news on Facebook and Twitter.

# # #

*At participating locations.

Remember to get your free fro-yo and support First Book.

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.

Blondie’s Pizza Replaces Fro-yo with Ice Cream Sandwiches

Fro-yo girl here. Blondie’s Pizza has replaced fro-yo with ice cream and ice cream cookie sandwiches. You can choose the type of cookie and flavor of ice cream and get an ice cream cookie sandwich for $2.50 (cash). They had 10 flavors of Dream Ice Cream and 3 types of cookies that day. The cookies and ice cream are available separately. The switch likely reflects the declining popularity of fro-yo in the Bay Area and the increasing popularity of ice cream cookie sandwiches. I’ve heard that the lines at CREAM in Berkeley are often quite long and it’s just down the street from the original Blondie’s location. I’ve seen freshly made ice cream cookie sandwiches pop up at other places in San Francisco, like Rock It Swirl, Cako Creamery and Dolce Amore.

Blondie’s started serving frozen yogurt back in 2008.Their fro-yo was cheap and plentiful. They also had tons of toppings to choose from. 

* BLONDIE’S PIZZA: 63 Powell St., San Francisco, CA
* BLONDIE’S PIZZA: 2340 Telegraph Ave., Berkeley, CA
* CREAM: 2399 Telegraph Ave., Berkeley, CA

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Candy Review: Morinaga Yogurt Hi-Chew

Fro-yo girl here. Hi-Chew has long been one of my favorite candies. It’s similar to Starburst but firmer, creamier, chewier and with better flavors. Over 113 different Hi-Chew flavors have been developed, including several yogurt flavors. While I found images of yogurt flavored Hi-Chew online, I hadn’t encountered the candy in the stores I visited till now.

Yogurt Hi-Chew comes in a 1.94 oz. pack with 12 individually wrapped pieces for $1.69 at Mitsuwa San Gabriel.

The taste reminds me of a yogurt drink like Yakult. It’s primarily sweet but also a bit tangy. The texture is the firm and chewy like a caramel. It’s very similar to Meiji’s Yogurt Caramels. I think the Meiji caramel is milkier and tastes a bit better than Yogurt Hi-Chew.

Ingredients: Millet Jelly, Gelatin, Sugar, Palm Oil, Concentrated Yogurt, Gelatin, Skim Milk, Yogurt Powder, Citric Acid, Lecithin

Amazon lists grape, green apple and honey apple as flavors of Yogurt Hi-Chew but doesn’t sell any of these flavors. Asianfoodgrocer.com has Yogurt Hi-Chew listed but is currently out of stock.

4.5 out of 5 stars.

* MITSUWA: 515 W. Las Tunas Dr., San Gabriel, CA

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, January 19, 2013

Tuttimelon West Portal Closed For Upgrades

Fro-yo girl here. The windows at Tuttimelon have been covered with brown paper. The store is closed and according to the sign, the closure is temporary and they will reopen soon after making minor upgrades. Maybe they’ll convert to self-serve? Or add Teaway items? I will provide an update. 

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

* TUTTIMELON WEST PORTAL: 44 West Portal Ave., San Francisco, CA

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Pasadena Fro-yo Report: Fro-yo vs. Cupcakes

Fro-yo girl here. Lovely Pasadena, the 9th largest city in Los Angeles County, has quite a few fro-yo options. While the line always seems to be the longest at 21 Choices, several fro-yo shops in town closed last year including Cantaloop, Frozziyo, and Yoguroo.

I’ve mentioned 21 Choices several times on this blog. It’s similar to Cold Stone Creamery only with fro-yo as a base and better toppings than CSC. The mix-ins are added to your fro-yo on a cold slab and mixed together. 

In Old Town, other fro-yo options include Pinkberry (a smaller location), Moka Cafe, TCBY/Mrs. Fields, Jamba Juice and Cold Stone Creamery. TCBY and Cold Stone Creamery offer scoopable fro-yo. Jamba Juice has a mix-in style similar to Yogen Fruz. 21 Choices has many more mix-ins than Jamba Juice. Moka Cafe offers two flavors of fro-yo a day (not self-serve) and feels more like a coffeehouse than a fro-yo shop.

The self-serve frozen yogurt shops are closer to CalTech and Pasadena City College. Buzio’s and Cherry on Top are both self-serve fro-yo shops. Buzio’s is independently owned while Cherry on Top is a SoCal based chain. Cherry on Top also offers pretty good tea based drinks there, including boba milk tea.

The nearest Yogurtland is several miles away in Alhambra, while Menchie’s, Buster’s and Penguin’s offer fro-yo in South Pasadena.

I’m pretty sure that there are more cupcake shops in Pasadena than fro-yo places. Once you reach Alhambra, fluff ice and boba tea places seem more popular than fro-yo. 

If I had to pick a favorite fro-yo shop in Pasadena, I’d choose 21 Choices. Some of the fro-yo flavors that have candy and cookies mixed in are so good! Plus the flavors are more customized. Try the Circus Animal Cookie fro-yo. 

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

* 21 CHOICES FROZEN YOGURT: 85 West Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91104

Monday, January 14, 2013

New Year, New Fro-yo Flavors

Fro-yo girl here. The holidays brought back favorite seasonal flavors like peppermint/candy cane, egg nog, gingerbread and sticky toffee pudding. The new year is a perfect time to change fro-yo flavors or introduce new flavors. New fro-yo flavors for January include Ice Cream Sandwich Bar from Menchie’s, Grapefruit Pinkberry, Creme Brulee from 16 Handles, and Berry Passionate Yogurt from Baskin-Robbins. 

The overachievers at Yogurtland have introduced three new flavors: Hazelnut latte, Guava Grapefruit sorbet, and their first Greek yogurt flavor, Raspberry Banana Greek. Guava Grapefruit sorbet is their second sorbet flavor. 

  • Grapefruit Pinkberry: I was expecting the yogurt to be quite tart and tangy like grapefruit usually is but Grapefruit Pinkberry is rather sweet with minimal bitterness. The texture was smooth and light. It felt lighter than some of their other flavors though it still had a creamy, milky quality. There wasn’t much yogurt flavor though and I would prefer a tangier grapefruit flavor. Pinkberry had fresh grapefruit segments, a new grapefruit basil puree and new caramelized almonds to complement their new flavor. The caramelized almonds are small crunchy pieces coated in caramelized sugar.
  • Guava Grapefruit sorbet (Yogurtland): Guava and grapefruit are both bold flavors and the balance of both in this new sorbet was quite pleasing and zingy. You could taste both flavors. The sorbet was very tangy and refreshing. I wish it were creamier but it’s a sorbet so that’s not going to happen unless they come out with Guava Grapefruit fro-yo.
  • Raspberry Banana Greek (Yogurtland): I cannot eat banana flavored anything but Mr. Froyo tried Raspberry Banana Greek and he said it was a strange combination of flavors that wound up tasting chalky and flat.

These new flavors are a perfect reason to visit a fro-yo shop even if it is freezing outside. It’s also citrus season in the U.S., so citrus flavored fro-yo feels particular right. 

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

Thursday, January 10, 2013

True Bliss Yogurt Grand Opening Celebration

Fro-yo girl here. True Bliss Yogurt, a friendly, family owned self-serve fro-yo shop, opened about 2.5 weeks ago. They have 14 flavors of fro-yo a day with toppings for 43 cents an ounce, Peet’s Coffee, churros and freshly baked Otis Spunkmeyer cookies.

The grand opening celebration takes place this weekend (1/12 - 1/13) and includes:
* Free balloons for kids (Sat. & Sun.)
* Raffle tickets w/ purchase (Sat.)
* Buy one get one free fro-yo (Sat., 5 - 8 PM)
* Fro-yo eating contest (Sat., 3 PM)
* Coloring contest (Sat. & Sun. 1 - 4 PM)
* Free churros for the first 100 customers who purchase fro-yo (Sat. & Sun.)
Prizes include free fro-yo and gift cards to Target, Sports Authority, etc.Follow True Bliss Yogurt’s FB page for updates.

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

* TRUE BLISS YOGURT N’ TREATS: 385 S. Kiely Blvd., San Jose, CA

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Fro-yo Wish List for 2013

Fro-yo girl here. Happy Fro-yo New Year! It’s time for a look back at my old 2012 wish list and time to announce my wishes for 2013.

I didn’t ask for much last year and most of my fro-yo wishes came true.Yogurtland opened in SF! Pinkberry opened in Union Square SF! I found delicious fro-yo popsicles that aren’t from Korea (thanks Blue Bunny). The only 2012 wish that didn’t come true was the invention of fro-yo mochi. It might exist but I haven’t seen it.

It's a new year and time for my new fro-yo wish list. It’s simple this year.

* Collect more new logo fro-yo spoons
* Try Yolato frozen yogurt gelato bars and Pinkberry Greek
* To be served by Frobot rather than a human being 

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.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Flavor of the Year (2012)

Fro-yo girl here. While Lime Breezy was my favorite new fro-yo flavor in 2012, the flavor of the year honors go to...chocolate hazelnut aka Nutella.

Chocolate hazelnut has shown up so many places in 2012. Pinkberry introduced Chocolate Hazelnut fro-yo in August 2012 and in October, Red Mango released its Fro-Yo Mashups which included Nutty Potion No.9, which is made with Nutella. You can find chocolate hazelnut fro-yo at Menchie’s, Tutti Frutti, and even Cold Stone Creamery. Back in November 2011, Yogurtland introduced a limited time Chocolate Hazelnut fro-yo flavor. They were ahead of the trend.

Jif introduced a chocolate hazelnut spread this year. Stash Tea has a chocolate hazelnut tea. See, chocolate hazelnut is everywhere.
This reminds me that I haven’t had a Ferrero Rocher in years.

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

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Best New Flavor of 2012

Fro-yo girl here. Peach Pinkberry, Blackberry Passionfruit (Yogurtland), Honey Badger (Red Mango)...2012 had its share of brand new fro-yo flavors. My favorite new fro-yo flavor for 2012 was from a new local (San Francisco) self-serve shop, Easy Breezy Frozen Yogurt: Lime Breezy fro-yo. 

Lime is one of my favorite flavors and it’s one that I rarely see in fro-yo form. Easy Breezy makes Lime Breezy with fresh lime juice. The fresh, tangy natural lime flavor shines through. The texture is creamy, light and smooth. The color is natural (not green). Check Easy Breezy’s Facebook page for the current flavor line up.

I also liked Yogurtland’s Key Lime Bar Tart fro-yo flavor, which was introduced early in 2011 and was made with real key limes.

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

* EASY BREEZY FROZEN YOGURT: 4028 24th St., San Francisco, CA