The newest trend in hang-out haunts are self-service yogurt bars. (Watch out: coffee shops may soon be obsolete!) These tiny shops nestled in inconspicuous spots are ideal places to simply drop in for a quick (healthy!) snack with friends. They cater to the persnickity, do-it-yourself attitude that runs deep in most of us. The choice is entirely yours.
One of my favorites in the area is Yogurtagogo. I stumbled across this place with Ryan one night as we were meandering downtown. The starkness of the white interior was alluring from the outside. As we entered through the door, we were confronted with some rather large cups in which to place our selection of flavors dispensed from the machines on the wall. The flavors ranged from plain vanilla to a zany pomegranate raspberry. They even had rotational flavors such as pumpkin and eggnog to delight one's tastebuds with the flavors of the season. It was possible to try each flavor in tiny paper cups they provided for our testing pleasure before selecting one, two (or all!) the variations to place in our personal vessels of sweetness.
After accomplishing the difficult task of choosing a yogurt flavor, we were then confronted with about 50 choices of toppings to sprinkle atop. There was fresh fruit, cereals, nuts, mochi, candy...the possibilities were nearly endless!
At the end, they place your yogurt creation on a scale and you pay by the ounce of what you have accumulated in your bowl. It seems much more reasonable to me than paying a flat rate for a large bowl, as you would at most ice cream/frozen yogurt shops, and, then, often end up eating only half of it...or on the flip side, wanting more! This way you purchase what you want to eat. It's your own fault if you overestimate your indulgence! ;-)
Best of all, the yogurt is nearly guilt-free, as it contains healthy yogurt cultures and very low calories!
The last visit I made was with my friend, Catherine. We didn't think we were that hungry after lunching on the jumbo California crepes at Crepeville. But, after whetting our appetites with a few samples, we had no trouble filling our bowls to the top (nor finishing them).
I chose the raspberry pomegranate yogurt, topped with fresh strawberries and bananas with a sprinkle of coconut. She chose a mixture of the raspberry pomegranate and vanilla yogurt with juicy strawberries, kiwi, and blackberries.
They have this handy, little punch-card they give you after your first visit, and once you have purchased ten bowls of your own unique concoctions, the eleventh is on them! I'm steadily working towards my free yogurt. :o)