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Ice cream challenge: yogurt?!

Frozen yogurt isn't ice cream, this I know. It deserves an honorable mention though because it has many of the same qualities. It's cold, sweet, creamy, and social. It has the benefit of being nominally healthier, too. I subject frozen yogurt shops to one, all-important criterion: can I put my own toppings on? If the answer is "no," the place loses out. Like shabu-shabu or Korean BBQ, frozen yogurt is one of the few institutions where I enjoy the novelty of doing all the work myself and still paying full price. After that, the chief requirements are an ample selection of fruit and nuts (not just candy) and tart, mildly sweet yogurt to put them on.

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Yog-Art in North Park (3026 University Avenue, 619-220-4999) fits the bill in both respects. The tart, taro-flavored yogurt has a refreshing, piquant flavor all on its own and the fruits are always in good condition. Plus, they have whole lychee, which I don't always want on my yogurt but to which I enjoy having access. After that, it's otherwise indistinguishable from other yogurt shops.

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There is one thing, though....

None

Yeah, that's right. Yog-Art has mangoneada! During my recent mango obsession, I didn't think to check the yogurt shop for mango treats. But Yog-Art knocks it completely out of the park with their chili-mango concoction. They blend up a mango slush and then layer than it the cup with chamoy, chili, and some hunks of fresh mango for texture. It lacks the DIY, Mexican charm of the Dixie cup full of frozen fruit, but it has the elegance of preparation that seems to distinguish a really good mangoneada from the pack.

On the otherwise level playing field, Yog-Art jumps to the forefront by sheer force of mango. I wonder now: plain, tart yogurt with fruit and chamoy...?

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Frozen yogurt isn't ice cream, this I know. It deserves an honorable mention though because it has many of the same qualities. It's cold, sweet, creamy, and social. It has the benefit of being nominally healthier, too. I subject frozen yogurt shops to one, all-important criterion: can I put my own toppings on? If the answer is "no," the place loses out. Like shabu-shabu or Korean BBQ, frozen yogurt is one of the few institutions where I enjoy the novelty of doing all the work myself and still paying full price. After that, the chief requirements are an ample selection of fruit and nuts (not just candy) and tart, mildly sweet yogurt to put them on.

None

Yog-Art in North Park (3026 University Avenue, 619-220-4999) fits the bill in both respects. The tart, taro-flavored yogurt has a refreshing, piquant flavor all on its own and the fruits are always in good condition. Plus, they have whole lychee, which I don't always want on my yogurt but to which I enjoy having access. After that, it's otherwise indistinguishable from other yogurt shops.

None

There is one thing, though....

None

Yeah, that's right. Yog-Art has mangoneada! During my recent mango obsession, I didn't think to check the yogurt shop for mango treats. But Yog-Art knocks it completely out of the park with their chili-mango concoction. They blend up a mango slush and then layer than it the cup with chamoy, chili, and some hunks of fresh mango for texture. It lacks the DIY, Mexican charm of the Dixie cup full of frozen fruit, but it has the elegance of preparation that seems to distinguish a really good mangoneada from the pack.

On the otherwise level playing field, Yog-Art jumps to the forefront by sheer force of mango. I wonder now: plain, tart yogurt with fruit and chamoy...?

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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