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FroYo: why does 16 Handles outperform all the rest?

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My girlfriend and I are semi-regulars at 16 Handles (East Village location), but here's what I don't understand: why does 16 Handles always have a line while other, similar places never do? Yes, 16 Handles has more flavors and more toppings than most, but I don't think that alone can explain it. For example, the place on Bleecker between 6th and 7th (the name of which I can't recall) has as many flavors and a decent selection of toppings, but there's never a line, notwithstanding what arguably is a better location. Theories?

(BTW, ever noticed that the majority of 16 Handles customer base is comprised of college-age young women? Do you suppose it's because they think that 8 oz. of low fat frozen yogurt buried under a mountain of oreos and M&Ms is gonna keep them skinny? Another 16 Handles conundrum!!)

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16 Handles
153 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

Phileo Yogurt
267 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014

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  1. Phileo Yogurt is the one on Bleecker between 6th and 7th avenue.

    Theory: 16 Handles is popular because it's buffet style, so you think you're getting a deal but you're really not.

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    16 Handles
    153 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

    Phileo Yogurt
    267 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014

    1. I agree with Kathryn...people like the idea of helping themselves. They also have a pretty large selection of yogurt flavors and toppings. It's pretty much the only yogurt place I indulge in (only a few times a year...the brownie and peanut cup bits are deadly!).

      1. I've tried out almost all of the fro-yo places in the city (self-serve and non self-serve), and find myself constantly going back to 16 Handles. It's not because it's cheap, or healthy, or the toppings/flavor selection-it's because its the best texture/flavor of yogurt I've found so far. This does not include any of the "tarts" that resemble Pinkberry/Red Mango...those I put in a separate category all together. I'm talking Red Velvet, chocolate, cookies n cream, peanut butter, etc. Phileo SUCKS, the flavors are just not well balanced and the texture is too runny. Tasti Delight is the same way-sometimes they're overly sweet, but most of the time they taste like they're trying to be healthy. At both of those places I end up getting one sample and leaving because the yogurt just isn't good. Same goes for that place that's a tasti delight clone on 14th near 6th, they have a bunch of other locations too, something like diet lite yogurt? Anyway, I really just prefer the consistency and flavor of the 16 handles flavors. Even the do it yourself place on St. Marks isn't nearly as good.

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        16 Handles
        153 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

        1. It's my favorite froyo place I tried in terms of taste so I go back

          1. There's a new do-it-yourself FroYo place on 6th Ave between 17th and 18th called Flavaboom (who comes up with these names?), which is now our favorite of the genre. They don't have the selection of 16 Handles, but we think the quality/flavor is better. If only they'd dim their lights a bit; with their bright white decor and bright lighting, you need sunglasses to walk into the place! Also, it's the most expensive, at $0.59/oz, compared to $0.52/oz at 16 Handles, and $0.49/oz at most other places.

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            16 Handles
            153 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

            Flavaboom
            600 6th Ave, New York, NY 10011