Thursday, December 29, 2011

2011 the Fro-yo Year in Review

Fro-yo girl here. As 2011 draws to a close, it’s time to look back at fro-yo events and trends and check out which of my fro-yo wishes came true.

Salty, sweet fro-yo flavors gain favor. This was the year when fro-yo flavors ventured into the land of salty and sweet, with peanut butter and jelly, salted caramel and maple bacon donut.

Fro-yo on the move. The rise of mobile fro-yo trucks was a major trend in 2011, with NYC and Chicago leading the way.

Fro-yo prices rise. The fro-yo price wars of 2009-2010 have ended and even Yogurtland raised its prices to 33 cents and up from 30 cents an ounce. Prices have gone up at many fro-yo shops.

Fro-yo bubble bursts in the Bay Area. Fewer fro-yo shops are opening as the number of closures rises. It’s always sad to see a fro-yo shop close but the ones that I will truly miss are Jubili (the first place I tried tart fro-yo) in SF, Yogurt Harmony in Berkeley, Tartini in Cupertino, and Fro-ggie in Fremont, CA.

Notable fro-yo openings in the Bay Area. Two locations of the Italian fro-yo chain, Yogorino, brought a richer style of fro-yo to SF. Jamba Juice’s Whirln’s fro-yo reached the Bay Area.

My fro-yo wishes mostly came true. I did get more signature fro-yo spoons. Yogurtland came out with Sanrio yogurt spoons. We did get a mobile fro-yo truck in the Bay Area though it was non-dairy. I did have a Greek fro-yo. However, I didn’t have any macarons with fro-yo.

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

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Best New Fro-yo Flavors of 2011

Fro-yo girl here. Now that the year’s coming to a close, I wanted to acknowledge the best new fro-yo flavors of 2011 (flavors introduced in 2011 that I had the chance to try):

* Blush's Gingerbread: I love how this isn’t your typical sweet gingerbread fro-yo flavor. It still has a bit of tang and real yogurt flavor. I love the blend of spices and the thick, creamy, dense texture.
* Yogurtland’s Oatmeal Cookies: Oatmeal cookies has cinnamon and brown sugar. So comforting.
* Yogurtland’s Chocolate Mint Cookies: Chocolate and mint make the perfect combination when the flavors are balanced and Yogurtland does it well in their rich, creamy chocolate mint cookies fro-yo. This flavor reappeared briefly as part of the 12 Days of Christmas promotion.

It’s difficult to choose between Yogurtland’s oatmeal cookies and chocolate mint cookies fro-yo. Both feature tiny bits of cookies in the yogurt mix which elevate the flavors.

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

* BLUSH BURLINGAME: 1212 Donnelly Ave., Burlingame, CA

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas Fro-yo Fans

Fro-yo girl here. It’s Christmas Eve and many fro-yo shops are open today. I plan on getting some fro-yo soon...something Christmas-inspired I hope.

Happy holidays to all fro-yo fans!

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

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Meiji Yogurt Caramel Review

Fro-yo girl here. Meiji Yogurt Caramels are worth looking for. They’re one of the few yogurt candies that actually taste good. A 2.5 oz box of individually wrapped caramels is $1.89 at Nijiya Market.

The caramel is square and slightly smaller than a Starburst. The caramel is firm and chewy like taffy. It doesn’t taste like your typical caramel (sugar that’s been caramelized). It tastes like a yogurt drink like Yakult but not as tangy and not as sweet. The flavor is more mild and milky. Delicious. Love the texture, the flavor and even packaging. I’m going to stock up on these.

Ingredients: starch, syrup, sugar, condensed milk powder, vegetable oil, yogurt powder, wheat flour

5 out of 5 stars.

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

* NIJIYA MARKET: 1737 Post St #333, San Francisco, CA

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Fro-yo Gift Ideas: Best Yogurt Gifts on Etsy

Fro-yo girl here. The fro-yo gift guide continues. This time I’ve picked out my favorite fro-yo/yogurt related gifts on Etsy. Yogurt soaps are the most common yogurt product on Etsy and those soaps look good, but it’s difficult to evaluate which soaps are better than others based on online listings.

* Easiyo Yogurt zippered coin purse ($5): eco-friendly and clever, Tonyassewingroom took a packet of yogurt mix and turned it into a fabric lined coin purse
* Keep calm and eat yogurt print ($12): the keep calm and carry on phrase started appearing everywhere about a year ago and now there are variations on that phrase. This print from adadart would make a charming addition to any fro-yo loving home.

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

Monday, December 12, 2011

Fro-yo Gift Ideas: Fro-yo Silhouettes

Fro-yo girl here. The holiday fro-yo gift guide continues and this one is for the crafty types. I’ve got a fondness for silhouette art. I saw a book about creating your own silhouette art and made me realize how easy it would be to create fro-yo silhouettes.

1. Find a fro-yo picture you’d like. You could start with a picture you’ve taken of a cup of fro-yo, find a picture online or use one from an ad or flyer. Use a photocopier to increase or decrease the size of the image (if desired).

2. Cut around the profile of the picture. Use this cutout to trace the profile onto the paper you’d like to use. Or trace onto cardboard if you need a sturdy template.

The fro-yo silhouette can be pasted onto colored notecards (Paper Source is the best place to get notecards because they have the widest variety of colors, shapes and sizes). Use the template to trace the image onto felt and you can add the felt fro-yo silhouette to a Christmas stocking, a tote bag, etc.

You could also send the image to Paperwink and have them create a custom rubber stamp for you for $38. Or if you’re really ambitious, you can chisel your own rubber stamp with supplies that you can find at Michael’s.

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

Friday, December 9, 2011

New Flavor Alert: Blush Gingerbread Fro-yo

Fro-yo girl here. Blush’s new gingerbread fro-yo flavor is simply brilliant. You must try it this holiday season. Other gingerbread fro-yo flavors exist but this one tops them all. It’s not super sweet or a substitute for ice cream. Blush’s organic gingerbread fro-yo actually is a bit tangy and has that real yogurt flavor. It has just the perfect blend of spices (clove for sure and probably the usual cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger). I love that you can actually see the spices in the fro-yo. I had gingerbread fro-yo on a cone dipped in chocolate. Incredible!

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

* BLUSH BURLINGAME: 1212 Donnelly Ave., Burlingame, CA

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Fro-yo Gift Ideas: Willow Glen Frozen Yogurt Gift Buckets

Fro-yo girl here. I really like these fro-yo gift buckets that I spotted at Willow Glen Frozen Yogurt. For $22.50, you get a painted bucket (one had a Xmas theme) with a $20 Willow Glen Frozen Yogurt gift card, candy cane, pen, etc. The bucket was wrapped up in cellophane. It looked ready for gift giving. Creating something similar would be really easy and any fro-yo fan would love to receive such a gift. I love the cheap, cute mugs at Daiso ($1.50 each). The new Pantone mugs ($15 each) are quite stylish and you can match the color of the gift card to the mug.

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

* WILLOW GLEN FROZEN YOGURT: 267 E. Campbell Ave. #A, Campbell, CA

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Fro-yo Gift Ideas: Fro-yo Photos & More

Fro-yo girl here. Looking for gift ideas for your fro-yo loving friend or loved one? Take one good picture of fro-yo and you can do so much with it. You can put the fro-yo picture on a t-shirt, tote bag, pillowcase, mug, notepads, cards, pillows, or ornaments using Zazzle, CafePress, etc. Or choose a variety of fro-yo pictures and create a photo collage or multiple canvas prints. CanvasPop can print your Instagram pictures on canvas for $30 - $60 each.

Pressed for time or don’t feel like personalizing something? FantasticFam has fro-yo t-shirts for $20.

Fro-yo gift cards are always appreciated, especially in my stocking.
Menchie’s is also a good bet for fro-yo gifts, including apparel, cooler bags, plush dolls, and more.

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

Friday, December 2, 2011

Tutti Frutti Not Coming to Westfield San Francisco Centre

Fro-yo girl here. Back in June, I posted a future fro-yo shop picture for Tutti Frutti at Westfield Centre SF. I’d seen the TF sign for that space for months. It said coming Spring 2011 and then they changed it to Fall 2011. The space is still vacant and the TF sign has been removed. It’s unclear who will move into the space next to Calbee in the food court.

TF had a Facebook page which said “Tutti Frutti San Francisco West Field Mall Location Coming Soon In The Food Court May, 1 2011.”

Westfield San Francisco Centre is getting worse (more vacancies). Bloem ‘n Sugar is gone (will I ever have another waffle smoothie?) and now Payless Shoes is closing too. Stonestown Galleria is also on a downward slide.

On another sad note, I tried to get fro-yo from Muffins Muffins and Lee’s Deli in downtown SF. Both still have fro-yo machines but no longer carry fro-yo.

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