Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Chobani Soho- First Greek Yogurt Store in NYC

Chobani Soho. Dog friendly too!
New York is so fancy pants. What we can buy at the grocery store for a dollar on sale, we need to have sold in a store front that rivals a high end jewelry, optical, cupcake, or macaron shop.

I am pleased to introduce Chobani Soho. Yes, the Greek yogurt you find on your grocery shelf is now served fresh daily in New York City. I laughed a little when I first heard it was coming to town. Now that I’ve seen the following of Chobani and tasted their yogurt creations, I am impressed and glad they opened up a yogurt bar. We are witnessing the Greek yogurt revolution and birth of a new trend. Frozen yogurt out, Green yogurt in. I wouldn’t be surprised if Fage opens up across the street from Chobani next year.

Greek yogurt is an acquired taste. It's not sweet. It's rich. It's is also thick. Although Chobani is more on the thinner side, some Greek yogurt is so thick that if you stuck a spoon in it, it would stand up straight left alone. The yogurt is thick because it is strained of liquid. During this process, most of the lactose in the yogurt is also lost. Greek yogurt is high in protein, has a low caloric count, and when non-fat or low fat it can be a pretty healthful option. There are many reasons why people are buying into the Greek yogurt craze.

The yogurt served at Chobani is not the same variety as the pre-packaged ones sold in the grocery store. For the yogurt bar, Chobani created 10 different recipes and two seasonal flavors. Does dark chocolate and pistachios float your boat? Feeling new age-y and want to jump start your morning? Yogurt topped with blueberries, Chia seeds, and Hemp might do the trick. Need a little something to tide you over before your next meal? Plain Chobani with a touch of honey keeps it simple. It’s also served with pita chips.

I like the Chobani store. They took the conservative, classy, high class route instead of going for a neon pastel plastic look. Chobani Soho suits the area. The store looks expensive with dark colored wood. It’s almost a look don’t touch atmosphere. It’s also crowded with tourists, shoppers, and locals taking a break while walking their dog.

The interior is a little hectic. There is a crowd and only one person to take your order. There are no cash registers at Chobani. Someone casually walks up to you, takes your order, collects your money, and then gives you your yogurt. At the back wall you can watch the yogurt chefs concoct your personalized bowl. The store is decorated with bags of Chobani branded pistachios, honey, water bottles, tote bags, and olive oil for sale. The table in the center is decorated seasonally. The last time I went in, the table was loaded with giant shiny ruby red pomegranates and pine cones.

Chobani interior
Private label Chobani everything
Since there is barely any seating, one is encouraged to take their yogurt to go. The yogurt is covered loosely with Chobani cheesecloth and held in place by a red elastic band reminiscent of Kabbalah. The bowl the yogurt is served in is made of glass, perfectly sized to hold a prepackaged Chobani from the grocery store, and yours to keep. If you eat in the store, they will trade your dirty bowl for a brand new clean bowl and let you go on your merry way. No more sneaking into public bathrooms to wash out your Chobani bowl for safe holding.

Ready to go or ready to eat!
Pumpkin and Walnut
Toasted Coconut and Pineapple
Cucumber and Olive Oil: Avoid! No one likes this one at all!
So far, I’ve tried Fig and Walnut, Toasted Coconut and Pineapple, Pumpkin and Walnut, and Pomegranate and Power. The ingredients are top shelf and plentiful. The toasted coconut and pineapple alone was a tropical experience. If you are a fan of Greek yogurt, I highly recommend trying out the Chobani store. They have somehow elevated the whole experience of eating a cup of Greek yogurt. If it still sounds far-fetched to you, I say, “Only in New York, only in New York”. Actually, I’ll rephrase that by saying, “Only in New York, only in New York. So far.” 

150 Prince Street
New York, NY 10012 

1 comment:

  1. Wow, I can't believe they opened up a store! I am an extreme fan of greek yogurt, so when we head there in Oct, this will be on my eat list. And yes, I agreee with you, "Only in NY".