If you’re reading this in the summer heat your electric fan just seems to be blowing around hot air, you’ve probably considered going out for frozen yogurt. Frozen yogurt places have exploded in popularity in the last 10 years, and their presence in South Bay is as routine as coffee shops. You may have wondered to yourself, “Where should I go?” but that’s the wrong question. Maybe you should ask yourself, “What should I get?”
Frozen yogurt dispensaries are fun places, but they’re frequently similar. Whether they’re chains or independently owned, you can bet on bright color schemes, weird light fixtures, modern furniture, and a wall of soft serve flavors on tap. The thing that makes most “froyo” places distinct is what flavors & ingredients they offer. The highly customizable aspect of frozen yogurt — pick any flavors, top it with anything, pay by weight — means you’ll always get exactly what you want. But that also dissuades experimentation.
We’ve all wondered what it would be like if we took the strange flavors and mixed them with the strange toppings. What would that do to our mouths? Our lives? We don’t want to risk our delicious cup of tart yogurt with strawberry slices just to see what these weird ideas taste like, so we don’t venture out of our comfort zone. That’s where I come in. In an effort to explore 3 good South Bay frozen yogurt houses, I set out to explore and explain the weirdest concoctions I can make at these places. I’m doing it so you don’t have to.
1. The Rainbow’s Vengeance
The Place: Pur Frozen Yogurt in Carson, CA
The Ingredients: Watermelon Sorbet & Strawberry Banana (Sugar free). Topped with coconut, gummy worms, boba green tea juice poppers and graham cracker dust.
The Experience: I knew immediately this was a mistake. Just from a design stand point, this is a terrible combination of colors & styles with no cohesion. I was not wrong. This cup is so sweet you feel it in your face, and I say that as an above average sweet tooth. I normally dislike coconut on anything, but here it at least helps to counteract the pangs of sugar pain. The boba poppers act as surprise entrants of flavor that explode when you’re trying to chew the very un-gummy gummy worms.
Experiment Verdict: 5 stars out of 10.
2. Circus of the Summer
The Place: Granny’s Yogurt in San Pedro, CA
The Ingredients: Salted Caramel Corn & Cotton Candy. Topped with walnuts, carob chips, lychee, a macaroon & a donut hole.
The Experience: If you haven’t seen a frozen yogurt/soft serve machine, there are three handles. One flavor on each side, and then a handle in the middle that combines the two flavors. Owners usually pair up flavors based on compatibility, and when I saw that the fine folks at Granny’s Yogurt had paired salted caramel corn & cotton candy together, I knew something was up. They were daring us, and I was there to take on the challenge. It did not look appetizing: a chocolate brown mixed with a bright, teal blue. As it turns out, they know exactly what they’re doing. It helps that their yogurt is uniquely creamy, but either way cotton candy & salted caramel are delicious together. The cotton candy is a light sweetness for the salty compliment, and the donut hole makes a great flavor sponge. This experiment is like when they accidentally discovered penicillin.
Experiment Verdict: 14 thumbs up out of 17 hands.
3. Perish Song
The Place: Yummy Yogurt in Rolling Hills Estates
The Ingredients: Pina Colada & Coffee Espresso. Topped with Andes mints, pecan praline bits, marshmallows, Nerds & butterscotch.
The Experience: The funny thing about Yummy Yogurt is that it isn’t self-serve. That means I had the added fun of asking a very nice employee to create a bizarre yogurt cup for me. Another thing: this place has no fruit. Everything is chocolate-inclined with all kinds of crushed up candy bars. Normally that’s exactly my bag, but I was here for adventure. I chose pina colada & coffee espresso because they’re both drinks. Everything in my cup seemed to divide into competing teams: Andes mints vs. coffee espresso, butterscotch vs. pina colada, Nerds vs. everything. Much like high school, the Nerds were the worst and didn’t fit in anywhere. Their intense sourness ruined every bite, and I felt a stomach ache every time I swallowed. It was a bad time for my mouth, but this was journalism, and I was doing it for you.
Experiment Verdict: C minus.
Would you eat any of these? What other absurd combinations can you think of?
Pur Frozen Yogurt – (310) 538 – 8769
20700 S Avalon Blvd
Carson, CA 90746
Granny’s Yogurt – (310) 514 – 2737
316 N. Western Ave.
San Pedro, CA 90732
Yummy Yogurt – (310) 377 – 0595
5314 Drybank Dr
Rolling Hills Estates, CA 90274