Just three years after the first Pinkberry frozen-yogurt shop took Los Angeles by storm, the company celebrated the grand opening of its 50th location at Fashion Island in Newport Beach today and I was in attendance as were lines of other fans.
Pinkberry co-founders Shelly Hwang and Young Lee were also there for the grand opening event and were serving up their tangy non-fat frozen yogurt to customers. The company was also giving away exclusive Newport Beach Pinkberry t-shirts to the first 200 customers that ordered yogurt, thus the lines. Also, all the proceeds from the grand opening are going to The Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation. Pretty nice.
Despite rumors from competitors and misreported articles and blog posts, Pinkberry’s recipe contains real yogurt with live and active cultures and is certified by the National Yogurt Association. Their yogurt isn't "all-natural" since their recipe contains some FDA approved additives as reported recently by The New York Times, however it IS yogurt, non-fat, low calaroie, contains live and active cultures and is a good source of calcium--what more do people want?
The first time I tasted their fro-yo I wasn't prepared for the tart and tangy taste since I was always used to frozen yogurt that tasted more like ice cream, however their frozen-yogurt tastes more like yogurt. Now, however, I'm addicted. I took my mom twice while she was out here and went four times last week!!
For those in the know, they have some secret menu options like In and Out Burger does, for example my favorite is ordering their off the menu topping, Mochi. It's a gooey rice ball but it tastes like marshmallow, I love it! So I usually get their original flavor with fresh pineapple and mochi. Another secret menu ordering tip is that you can ask for any Pinkberry flavor to be swirled with another, yet this isn't noted on their menu. So, the next time you go, you can order one of these options and seem like a regular ;) Unfortunately they only have stores in NY and the Los Angeles area right now, but they have plans to continue to open in other areas.
Here are some photos of the shirts, lines, and a photo of me with the Pinkberry CEO: