Pinkberry IS TAKING OVER THE WORLD
Does anyone know of any yogurt places similar to Pinkberry that have popped up as a result of Pinkberry. Examples in LA are KiwiBerry and Cantaloop. Anyone else know of others?
Ce Fiore, Yogotango, Yogurt Queen, Red Mango, Ice Berry...I'm sure there are dozens, although they each have small differences. Someone seems to have sold the yogurt shop idea to every interested entrepreneur in the Los Angeles area. ...or maybe they're all just so addicted to the stuff that they felt compelled to become their own supplier. Why do you ask?
Red Mango is coming to town. In fact, I believe this weekend is the grand opening of the shop in Westwood. While it will be impossible to convince any Crackberry addicts of the quality issues that plague Pinkberry (i.e., powdered mix), Red Mango has taken its time to secure a true dairy that will produce their yogurt product to the level of quality that they demand. I had a chance to try the green tea (not flavor - the real thing) froyo from Red Mango. If you're familar with maccha, you will truly taste it in their product. And the yogurt does taste yogurty, not ascorbic and lemony.
I believe at least three or four shops will be opening in the general LA area within the near future. Westwood, I think two around West LA and and Palms/Culver City. The froyo war has been elevated to a much higher level now. I don't know about the others, but Red Mango can claim that they have frozen yogurt...
Personally, I would still like to see an ingredient list. There's a powdered "sour" yogurt mix on the market that is low fat and all, but the first 2 ingredients are: corn syrup solids and partially hydrogenated oil. Um, I love the yogurt too, but if it's just as unhealthy as every other low-fat dessert concoction, I don't know if I would like it as much. ...or maybe no one cares.
I can't vouch for the others, but according to my source, Red Mango is the real thing. With that said, we all know that yogurt, frozen or otherwise, is the starting point. What goes in from there is up to each producer, whether it's Yoplait, Fage, or in this case the froyo shops (although it appears most aren't using yogurt). I can tell you that my source was very impressed with the quality of their product, where live cultures and quality ingredients were emphasized - just what one should expect. Evidently, the corp office has an operating froyo machine inside, and people serve themselves throughout the day. Paraphrasing my source, "These people in the office must have the healthiest digestive tracts in town..."
I think my one caviat for flavored yogurt is to consider that sweeteners are added to many of these products - alot of it. If I recall, one teaspoon equals 2.5 grams. Looking at my container of Trader Joe yogurt, it has 25 grams of carbs. I know not all of the carbs are added sweetener - I believe about half of that naturally occurs in milk, so the other half would be the equivalent of about 5 teaspoons of sweetener? Red Mango's product isn't nearly as sweet, so I think it's safe to assume that the carb content will be lower, but you get my drift...