By Erika Webb
For Hometown News
DELTONA - Yogurt.
Alone, the word sits and conjures the same feelings as the words "lima beans" and "beets," at least for me. Now, place "frozen" in front and we're in a whole different cafeteria.
Yep, it's Yogurt manager Dustin Oehler does not want me, or you, to confuse frozen yogurt with ice cream. But he's not the boss of my taste buds!
I understand his point, however. Deltona's only self-serve frozen yogurt café offers a healthy alternative to ice cream.
"A lot of people confuse the two, but our product is fat-free and healthy," Mr. Oehler said.
Options include nonfat yogurts in non-traditional flavors; non-fat, no sugar added (made with Splenda); low and reduced fat; and sorbets which are non-dairy, non-fat but full of fruit flavor.
I was instantly cheered by the wall colors, which are a lot like flavors - raspberry, lemon, lime, chocolate and mango. Then, I spotted the self-serve yogurt machines and had a "Jetsons" flashback. This is going to be fun, I thought. There are eight flavors including Watermelon Sorbet, Dreamy Dark Chocolate, Pink Lemonade Sorbet, Strawberry Sensation, Blueberry Tart, Birthday Cake, Mango Sorbet and Wild Strawberry.
Mr. Oehler said the flavors change periodically.
Customers are invited to mix and mingle as many flavors as they'd like in cups or waffle cones. The cost is 42 cents per ounce with a typical serving ranging from $3 to $5. Each "creation" is weighed and charged accordingly. That means as much or as little as you want, with more than 20 topping choices. Creation indeed!
Ready for the toppings?
Sour gummy worms, M & M's, Reese's Pieces, Oreo cookies, chocolate chips, coconut, candy sprinkles, Nilla Wafers, Heath Bar crunch, granola, graham cracker crumbs, walnuts, pecans, almonds, peanuts, maraschino Cherries, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, kiwi, strawberries, pineapple, mango, chocolate and caramel syrups and whipped cream.
Dreamy Dark Chocolate would have been the easy way out. I wanted to see if there was decadence to be found in the fruit flavors, so I mixed the Blueberry Tart and Wild Strawberry. Topped with sprinkles, pecans, peanuts, blueberries, strawberries and kiwi, it was a flavor and texture extravaganza. And it was so good.
The strawberry frozen yogurt was smooth, creamy and sweet, but naturally so, not in a saccharine or high-fructose corn syrup way. It reminded me of a strawberry milkshake, but milkshakes are made from that other stuff. The blueberry was, in fact, tart but very refreshing and a great complement to the sweetness of the strawberry. And I had to pat myself on the back for topping selection. Not that I think there is an incorrect combination among these. The nuts and sprinkles added a sweet and salty crunch. The fruit was fresh and juicy. Those blueberries were huge.
Mr. Oehler said at Yep, it's Yogurt the fruit is always fresh, never frozen.
"A lot of the customers come in because we offer strictly fresh fruit," he said. "Many places only serve it frozen, in syrup, but this is so much better. It's more costly for us, but it's worth the investment."
Overall, the experience was fun as well as delicious. I kept thinking it would be a perfect place to entertain kids, with no resulting sugar high.
And, right next to the register you'll find free loyalty cards. Grab a card and get it swiped each time you make a purchase. When you reach $50 in purchases, you'll get $5 off.
"Yep" now offers fresh frozen gourmet yogurt to go in pint-size containers. This debut features a special price of $3.99 for a limited time. The regular price is $5.99.
After eating at Yep, it's Yogurt, I really think the right thing to do is simply change the word yogurt altogether - to Yogreat.
Yep, I like that much better. It just looks tastier.
Yep, it's Yogurt is located at 121 Howland Blvd. in Deltona (corner of Howland Blvd. and S.R. 415 in front of the Walmart Supercenter) within the strip center containing Pablo's Mexican Grill, Hungry Howies Pizza, Gamestop, Metro PCS and Mattress One. Call (407) 323-4700, find them on Facebook or visit www.yepitsyogurt.com.