The frozen yogurt craze has hit DC. I’ve been following this story for 3+ years from reading food blogs. Someone copied/stole the “secret recipe” of Korean style frozen yogurt that was sold in South Korea under the tradename, Red Mango, and gave it an airlift to the US. A store called Pinkberry opened in LA. Then everyone went crazy for this yogurt. A list celebraties lined up the streets and paid triple-digit parking tickets. LAPD had to send in extra cops for traffic control. As LA food bloggers blogged the LA Times, the NYT, the FT, the Guardian, the Observer, the New Yorker, the Saloon, and the WSJ followed. I bet even Warren Buffet has had some spreadsheets gone over with him by his crusty advisers. I bet Pinkberry taste good in Omaha.
Four or five more Pinkberry stores opened, and then a bunch more, along with copy cat stores like Fiore and Kiwiberry. Reportedly, one of these owners, a Stanford MBA, stooped so low as to write inflammatory comments on other people’s blogs about his competitors! That was scandalous, but hardly criminal. In those early days, gang activities were involved as jealousy and competition escalated, and the showdown was taken to the streets of LA. A turf war started that involved bling blings, bang bangs, and lickety lickety splits. It was INTENSE.
In the summer of 2006, I flew to LA for a tasting. When I came back, I looked around Tenleytown, and had a starry-eyed version of my future — the opening of a Pinkberry store in DC. I called Pinkberry but was told that there were no franchise opportunities. Two or three years later, all kinds of copy cats have popped up: Tangysweet, Angelberry, Mr. Yogato, SweetGreen, Iceberry.
But…where is our Pinkberry?
I want Pinkberry to win! Number 1, PB incurred venture risk in the US. Number 2, PB tastes the best. Number 3, who doesn’t like a semi-healthy live bacteria laden frozen treat topped with anti-oxidant rich berries and nuts? Someone who wants to die young and who doesn’t like to have fun, that’s who.
All of this is a long-winded way to get to my real point, which is to testify that blogging played an incredibly important role in all of this. Pinkberry got its fame not in a vacuum but with the help of the LA good bloggers, spearheaded by Collen Cuisine, that catapulted Pinkberry to the top. Pinkberry wouldn’t be what it is today without the clever and witty words that were used to spin this yogurt fantasy using nothing but the 26 yummy, lacy letters of the English alphabet.
Levitate! Levitate! Rise or float in the air especially as a result of supernatural power that overcomes gravity! PINKBERRY WE LOVE YOU!!!!