Thursday, April 9, 2009
Utahns have always been known for their love for gimmicky desserts. Whether it's jell-o with creatively placed fruit chunks in the middle, or variations of ice cream, Provo might as well be the capital of dessert indulgence, most likely as a way of over-compensating for the lack of the regular vices found in most American college towns.
With that said, 2008 saw the rise of the Provo frozen yogurt spot. The foundation for this craze was laid in the 90's, as the "Yogi" in Utah fast food chain Hogi-Yogi. Frozen yogurt is a natural drug of choice for health-consicious yuppie college students and their older married friends.
It was no surprise to see startups like Fro-Yo or Yoasis (or as I call it, Broasis) catch on quickly in Provo. I did not, however, foresee the extent to which this fad would spread through Utah County in the face of a "recession". The day is not far off where there will be (apparently) recession-proof frozen yogurt restaurants on literally every street corner in the BYU bubble.
Tomorrow night may very well be the apex of the Frozen Yogurt wars: Competing over-the-top bro-fest events at competing frozen yogurt businesses.
According to my Facebook Events page, on Friday, April 10th, Spoon Me is having a "Spring Fever" party, while less than a block away, Yoasis is holding their much-anticipated One Year Anniversary Party. Both events boast the usual suspects: free admission, local bands as opening acts to the headlining local DJ/Dance Party, and of course, overpriced frozen yogurt.
Events like this teach the average Provo college student two valuable lessons:
1) You should never have to pay for any event ever in Provo. Places that charge for live music are ripping you off and offer no difference in quality to frozen yogurt parties. After attending said parties you are officially qualified to write home and tell your parents that you are fully intergrated to the underground culture of Provo...
2) Live music is never reason enough to leave your apartment/dorm. It MUST be accompanied by the presence of food (preferrably frozen yogurt) and another form of entertainment, including, but not limited to: Live DJs, Guitar Hero contests, or Giveaways.
So who will win the frozen yogurt wars tomorrow night? This is a difficult question to answer; one of demographics, location, and marketing strategies. I, however, will be far from the pandemonium, watching The New Nervous play at a house in Orem, where I can nearly guarantee there will be no frozen yogurt.