101 Combinations: Twisted Yogurt Creations

Not wanting to waste our trip to Sherwood Park last week (I realize I make Sherwood Park sound like Camrose or something, but any public transit routes I’m not familiar with might as well be), I asked Mack and Grandma Male if they were up to visiting a new frozen yogurt place I had heard about. They agreed.

Twisted Yogurt Creations opened up in August of this year, and alongside Kiwi Kiss, might mean the frozen yogurt trend has finally caught up to Edmonton. Unlike Kiwi Kiss’s take-out facade, however, Twisted Yogurt provides seating options, and amongst their bright green walls and fun light fixtures, it reminded me of the chic frozen yogurt bars in the States.

Twisted Yogurt interior

The self-serve nature of the shop caught me off guard, though I soon understood why it was set up that way. With eight base yogurt flavours, fresh fruit and about three dozen dry toppings to choose from, customers were encouraged to experiment and find their favourite combinations. For that reason, I think Twisted Yogurt is definitely more family-friendly, and indeed during our visit, a father was there with his young daughter, out for dessert. Twisted Yogurt also serves coffee and cookies, and in the new year, may look at serving hot food, such as waffles to be topped with yogurt and fruit.

The friendly clerk explained how the process worked – each yogurt dispensing machine had three levers, two of which dispensed the two listed flavours, and a third that dispensed a twist of the two (one or two flavours change every week). Once we chose our yogurt base (we were encouraged to mix and match), we would then select whatever toppings we wanted. The last step was to get our creation weighed and paid for, at 49 cents an ounce.

Mack dispensing yogurt

Mack and Grandma Male chose the strawberry kiwi, while I opted to try both the very berry and pomegranate acai flavours. I stuck to the more traditional fresh fruit toppings, while Mack decided to garnish his yogurt with a sprinkling of gummy bears.

At the dry topping station

While I’m sure the final “weigh in” could end up being pretty expensive, we were all fairly conservative with our amounts, and our three cup order rang in at just under $12, not too bad for a sweet treat before dinner. I loved the pomegranate acai, which balanced between a fruity flavour and the tang one expects from frozen yogurt. More than anything else, I think I liked all of the options I had – possibilities are priceless!

Our creations!

I had the chance to speak to Twisted Yogurt owner Michael Bossio after my visit, and he said that they will be opening up three to four more stores in Edmonton over the next six to eight months. More than that, they will soon obtain the “live and active cultures” seal, which means that their product has more than 10 million probiotic cultures per ounce – a boon in the current state of probiotic mania. Michael is very proud of their frozen yogurt, particularly the tanginess that comes from using genuine yogurt.

I for one am very happy about the forthcoming frozen yogurt boom in Edmonton, and look forward to experimenting with more of my own creations at Twisted Yogurt!

Twisted Yogurt Creations
#138, 1020 Sherwood Drive, Sherwood Park
(780) 416-1133
Sunday-Thursday 10am-9pm, Friday-Saturday 10am-10pm

Frozen Yogurt Frenzy: Kiwi Kiss

I have fro-yo envy. Certain US metropolises like New York are overflowing with frozen yogurt joints like Pinkberry and Red Mango, so much so that the competition forces each shop to find their niche, or at least, maintain a high level of quality to retain its customers. We had the chance to visit Iceberry in DC, and loved it as an alternative to a cafe or ice cream parlour.

More than that though, while I’ll have my share of ice cream throughout the year, there’s something about the fruit content and relative lightness of frozen yogurt that appeals to me more as a cold treat. And yes, I do feel less guilty after indulging in a large serving of frozen yogurt than when I have done the same with ice cream or even gelato.

In Edmonton, we have had to rely on a handful of Yogen Fruz outlets, most in shopping centres and others a concession option at Cineplex Theatres…until now.

Kiwi Kiss opened about a month ago in the lower level of the City Centre Shopping Centre, next to Starbucks, while folks in Sherwood Park have Twisted Yogurt Creations (138, 1020 Sherwood Drive, 780-416-1133), open since August of this year, to satiate their cravings.

Kiwi Kiss

I noticed the sign for Kiwi Kiss months ago, but wasn’t aware that it was a frozen yogurt purveyor until I came upon it again on Saturday afternoon while we were in line for Starbucks. I loved the eye-catching green and orange colour scheme and globe lights. I asked the friendly clerks if I could snap their photo for my food blog with an intention to return on a different day. But after they agreed to my request with some curiosity, one of the clerks offered me a sample on the house!

Topping selection

I happily asked for her recommendation, and she obliged, selecting her favourite matcha green tea for me. Kiwi Kiss also offers three additional flavours – original, coconut and acai. Of the dozen or so toppings, including fruit and dry goods, I selected strawberries and blueberries. She threw in a few mochi balls (glutinous rice) which she indicated were an acquired taste, but which she quite enjoys herself. I’ve had them before, but would never have thought to pair it with frozen yogurt.

Kiwi Kiss Frozen Yogurt

As with green tea ice cream, I was expecting an overwhelming, even slightly bitter taste of green tea, but the flavour was subtle, and enjoyably cool to the palate. Mack was anticipating a sweeter yogurt as well, but found it just right. The fruit was a nice touch, even though the berries are far from being in season. The mochi provided some interesting chewy texture, but they didn’t add anything to the yogurt, at least for me.

Prices start at $2.95 for a teaser (small) size of original without toppings, up to $7.95 for nirvana (large) size of the flavoured frozen yogurt with toppings. The size I would likely pick up myself – a small flavoured yogurt with toppings – is priced at a reasonable $4.85, definitely on par with ice creams of similar size. Fruit parfait ($4.95-$5.95) and probiotic iced teas (under $4) are also available.

I look forward to satisfying future fro-yo cravings at Kiwi Kiss – I hope this means more purveyors are on the horizon in the city!

Kiwi Kiss
10088 102 Avenue (Edmonton City Centre Mall)

Day 1 in DC: Greenery and Georgetown

Day 1 in DC began with an early wakeup call– 5am to be exact. Early flights are my nemesis, but I suppose red eye flights (of which I have never had the pleasure of experiencing), would be worse.

Much needed wake-up coffee (speaking of which, I didn’t know there is now a Starbucks just a stone’s throw after security)

With no direct flights to Washington, we had a brief layover in Toronto, then were on our way to DC. The terminus at Washington Dulles Airport was a bit strange, as the boarding gates were not located in the same facility as the luggage belts and connection to ground transportation. We had to take a shuttle vehicle that carried us between buildings – it seemed like a terribly inefficient system, and though a metro line is in the works, it made us wonder why the terminal was designed that way to begin with.

We eventually made out way to the taxi stand, and driving into the city, what shocked us most was how green it was. Lining the beltways were trees in full bloom, while wildflowers and long grasses were monopolizing roadside spaces. I suppose it shouldn’t have been a surprise, but as it was snowing back in Edmonton that day, the full force of spring was difficult to imagine until we were able to immerse ourselves in it.

Our taxi ride into Foggy Bottom cost us a pretty penny ($60!), but had the benefit of a convenient and stress-free commute to our hotel. We had chosen the George Washington University Inn partly on price, and though it wasn’t the most economical accommodation we found, its proximity to a Metro stop was too attractive to overlook.

George Washington University Inn

We found it to be situated on a quaint street, just a few minutes away from the infamous Watergate complex (which, in addition to being a tourist attraction, also housed a Safeway), as well as the John F. Kennedy Centre for the Performing Arts. The colourful walkups that lined the street helped establish a feeling of home in the area.

Our neighbours for the week

Upon checking in, we found that we had been upgraded to a suite. This entitled us to a room with more space than we knew how to deal with – a large sitting room with a television and desk, kitchenette with stovetop, sink and fridge, and a separate bedroom and bathroom. Our only complaints about the room was the poorly designed bathroom that was significantly lacking in counter space, and hard-lined internet.


After a quick nap, we took advantage of our still-nimble feet (this would change in a hurry) and walked to adjacent Georgetown for dinner. Not connected by Metro, there was shuttle bus service available from two different stops, but at about 15 minutes away, we couldn’t justify waiting for a bus.

Georgetown was a happening place, even on a Monday evening – likely a mix of tourists, locals, and college students gearing up for graduation that week. We didn’t do much deliberate shopping, as we were fairly hungry at this point, but I did take note of shops such as Paper Source that I wanted to return to on a different evening.

Mack in Georgetown

Over the course of our wanderings, we stopped at IceBerry. I had read on a Chowhound thread that the frozen yogurt craze that hit LA and New York a few years back had finally reached DC. I couldn’t resist a cool treat that would hopefully tide us to something more substantial, as I wasn’t sure exactly how far our dining destination was located. Open until 11pm, it seemed to be a nice alternative to a coffee shop or an ice cream parlour, and based on the number of people inside, many agreed.

We ordered just one treat to share – a small strawberry (plain and chocolate were the other options) topped with blackberries. It totalled over $4, and at 95 cents a topping, each blackberry cost us over 20 cents.

Strawberry Frozen Yogurt from IceBerry

Though it was good to try, I have to say I prefer the pureed “real” fruit yogurt offered by Yogen Fruz– nothing ever replaces the textured crunch from strawberry seeds. That said, I wouldn’t mind such a yogurt parlour trend picking up in Edmonton – more late night options are a good thing.

Just as it was getting dark, we reached our desired location – Five Guys.

You can read Mack’s recap of day 1 here.