I have to laugh remembering that only after knowing a friend of my husband's for two days, I watched him lean into my then-fiancé and say, "You have it easy—the key to her heart is a good cup of ice cream and a steady supply of it."
Our friend didn’t know this at the time, but my husband really has it easy because I’m an equal opportunist when it comes to frozen desserts. Gelato, custard, Pinkberry (it deserves a category of its own), granita, sorbet. Milk, no milk. As long as it can give me a brain freeze, I'll be spooning it in faster than you can say “lickety-split.” And although the organic So Delicious coconut-milk fudge bars in my freezer are calling my name right now, my normal preference is for something with a little oomph beyond sugar substitutes and non-dairy “dairy.”
So I thought I knew my chilled confections, but I froze in my tracks when I recently popped by Yogurbella at Mercato. What started a few years back as a Pinkberry rip-off (sorry, original owners, but you know it’s true) now has a new Italian owner, and he’s reinventing the froyo-churning wheel. His six soft-serve flavors are a half-gelato, half-frozen yogurt recipe, so you get the rich flavor and creaminess of the former with the look and feel of the latter (plus more of its waistline-friendly attributes at just 140 calories a cup). If your waistline doesn’t figure into your dessert calculus, there’s a mini-mart of toppings to choose from (candy corn, caramel-filled chocolate turtles, sour worms and Cap’n Crunch, to name a few), but even with that selection, the raspberries, kiwi and strawberries should beckon. Ripe, plump and the opposite of the gunk that’s sometimes seen in tubs at ice cream shops, they’re fresh and irresistible—just like the swirls they’re placed atop at Yogurbella.