Go Berry, go healthy

About 3 months ago, I met my friend Molly for our usual weekend run. Even though we met nearly every weekend, we always had something new to talk about. I think during long runs your mind just goes in all directions, trying to think of something, anything exciting. We always had a great time, talked each others’ ears off and those long miles flew by (for the most part). On this particular run, we discussed business as usual and then Molly somewhat casually mentioned that a few days prior she and her fiance, Alex, were daydreaming about opening their own business (nothing new here) and that somehow the conversation became more concrete and they started looking into moving to Northampton, Massachusetts to open a froyo shop. Say what? Moving… froyo? Is this really happening? She wanted to hear my opinion. I could see the internal struggle she and Alex must have had. Was this a really great idea or a really bad one?

This was risky for sure, but it seemed to make sense. Neither one of us met anyone to-date that tried tart frozen yogurt from the likes of Pinkberry, Berryline and Red Mango and didn’t completely fall in love. In fact as the days were starting to warm up, our own experience showed that trips to froyo shops were becoming more and more frequent… and Northampton (in fact Western Mass in our knowledge) did not have one single froyo shop! Molly and Alex wanted to do it the right way too – use local ingredients as much as possible. Northampton has a really strong local culture so we both agreed this would not have been lost on their customers. After long hours at the tasting facility and a trip to Northampton where they found the perfect spot for their shop, they were off. Just like that.

Fast-forward to yesterday, when on our trip back from our little getaway at the Old Inn on the Green in New Marlborough in Massachusetts (which was overall a very disappointing experience – I’d rather just move on instead of talking about it here. The food was the only thing that was good. Let’s leave it at that.) we stopped by Amherst and Northampton. We drove around our old UMass campus. It was actually quite timely because Adam and I met there. We drove by our first dorm, then our sophomore year one and reminisced about the old times. It was somewhat incidental, though, that the trip there fell on our wedding anniversary (July 5th) because you probably guessed by now what the main destination was – Molly and Alex’s 7-week old froyo shop in Northampton – Go Berry. Seeing it was surreal and I nearly hopped inside after seeing the gorgeous, clean store front.

Let’s take a peak inside… :)

It was a lot larger and more spacious than I imagined. I loved the giant windows and all the natural light they allowed. (M&A agree that the space is larger than they currently need but this was an old Cold Stone location that they couldn’t pass up, and hopefully if they expand into a few other offerings, like waffles, the space will be utilized).

We hugged, got a quick tour of the back area, where one of the workers was chopping fresh strawberries for toppings, and then got to tasting. Original, strawberry and coconut were flavors of the day. Each was amazing – creamy and delicious just like froyo we all learned to love. Molly mentioned that many shops add water to their recipe to bulk it up – at Go Berry they only use skim milk, fat free yogurt, sugar and natural emulsifiers. No water = creamier texture. Adam and I agreed – this was perfect (I’d compare it to Berryline – our favorite froyo in Boston)! Now that we confirmed that the yogurt was good, we moved on to the toppings – there were so many of them, and some I’ve never seen before. I love froyo!! 😀

Adam always gets the same thing: small original with strawberries and oreos. He was a happy customer. :)

I almost always get a small original (or half with nutella or coconut – if available) with mango and pecans. This time there were so many toppings I couldn’t wait to try that I went all out. Here is my beast (the girl needed to use a medium cup to fit all my toppings in :mrgreen: )

Half original/half coconut frozen yogurt with fresh mango, walnuts, toffee and toasted coconut (the 2 last ones were toppings I haven’t seen before and I loved them both – they really made this taste like an even more special treat)

See, there is some fruit over there 😉

I ate every single delicious bite and could keep eating if we didn’t have dinner plans later on. You know that natural fat-free froyo can be a meal, right? 😉

Photo time with the owners. Say cheese 😎

Nope. One more time…

Ok, got it! :)

It was amazing to catch up with Molly and Alex and see their dream come to fruition. The shop is gorgeous, the yogurt is amazingly tasty and they seem to continue having a blast together despite the hard work that owning a small business obviously is (oh and their wedding is just 2 months away!).

If you are in Western Mass area, definitely swing by Northampton and give Go Berry a try. I am obviously biased but I give you my word – it’s good!!

What’s your favorite froyo flavor? What’s your favorite topping?

PS – Molly reads my blog, so if you have any questions for her, I bet she’ll be able to answer them soon. :)

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20 comments to Go Berry, go healthy

  • I went to UMASS too!

    I just moved to western MA!!! I’ll be stopping by. It’s so hard to find a froyo place outside of the city. Suburbanites like froyo too!

  • Congrats to your friend for following her dream and opening up an amazing shop! If I’m ever in the area I’ll definitely be stopping by. :)

  • I love those self serve fro yo shops because its so customizable :). My fave combo is a mix of cake batter and pb fro-yo with pb cups and capn crunch.

  • Wow – how inspiring!! My hubby and I always talk about opening a place in Cleveland, but we’re too chicken. Congrats to your friends!!

    I think pb and banance fro-yo is my favorite, with granola on top! :)

  • WOW. that is AMAZING. i’d absolutely love it if my friend opened a froyo shop up!

    as shocking as it is i’ve only ever had ONE froyo! and it was strawberry and very delicious! x

  • Oh my goodness how adorable and exciting!! I would love to have that kind if initiative to just go and do that. Sounds like they’ve got a good thing going too and with a demand. I wish them good luck.

  • How cool! Have they been stressed or has it gone pretty smoothly? The space looks very cute!

  • awww, that is awesome!!! i’d love to hear more from molly, she should guest post about the process :) i haven’t had fro yo since i got back from italy but might need to hit it up tonight!!

  • Aw, that’s so exciting!!! The yogurt looks marvelous, and the shop looks so cute! :)

  • Wow! Congratulations Molly! That is so exciting. I really enjoyed meeting her when I ran with you both last fall. I’m sorry she’s moved, but what an incredible thing to follow a dream and see it realized!

  • That’s so exciting! I am due for a trip to the Happy Valley and I will definitely be visiting this shop!

  • Very cute. I will admit I am not a tart fro yo girl. Sorry. :-( I think I am the only one that hasn’t fallen in love with this trend, but I’m also not much of a yogurt person to begin with. That said, I am always a fan of people who follow their dreams. Also lovely that they are able to feature local ingredients. :-)

  • of course it can be a meal! as long as its satisfying, anything can be made into a meal. i just love how they support local lifestyles by incorporating those values into their business! thats fantastic <3

  • MMM! FroYo is my favorite kind of meal! haha :)

  • Thanks for the review Elina, and for all of the good wishes! This has definitely been a lot of hard work, but also an absolutely wonderful experience. We’d love to have any and all “Healthy and Sane” readers stop by!

  • That is so awesome. I love when people follow their dreams and do what it is that their heart tells them. I think life is so much fuller that way! :)

    Best of luck to your friend and her husband.

  • I didn’t realize you actually went to UMass too! I picked up from another post that you went to school in Amherst, but I wasn’t sure where. Ben and I also both graduated from UMass (’01 and ’05).

    I am so jealous that there’s a fro-yo shop in Noho now! Heck I wish there was one in Worcester, or anywhere in Central Mass. I promise that if Molly wants her next shop anywhere near me, there won’t be any competition! I’ll even help scout the location :)

    The good news is that my youngest brother is transferring to UMass this coming semester, so I have a good chance of visiting very soon.

    And one last thought – have fun tonight! Wish I could be there.

  • Donna

    I’ve been there!!!! I went very soon after it opened and loved it. I was a little nervous about trying the tart because I don’t usually love tart food, but I was pleasantly surprised. Your friends are doing a great job! Can’t wait to go back and get more especially after hearing their story.

  • Desiree

    I will be in NoHo tomorro I just watched the local news and heard about it…I’m so undecisive I do not know how I would choose!!!

  • Desiree

    I’m so excited! How many flavors are there and toppings mmmm can’t wait for tomorro!

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