Self-serve frozen yogurt is coming to Winchester, in the form of Swizzles Frozen Yogurt.
Swizzles just signed a lease for 10 Mount Vernon St., in the former Mailboxes Business Center location. The Winchester location would be the first Swizzles shop in Massachusetts, founder and CEO Adam Kessner said. He hopes to open the shop by Nov. 1.
At Swizzles, customers serve their own soft-serve frozen yogurt from machines dispensing flavors such as pomegranate, New York cheesecake and cookie dough. The most popular flavor is cake batter.
Kessner said the do-it-yourself experience is part of what makes Swizzles different from traditional ice cream shops.
“To be able to pull the handle on the… ice cream machine for the first time is amazing,” Kessner said.
Most of the frozen yogurt flavors are non-fat, according to Kessner, because they are made with skim milk.
Of course, once you add toppings to the mix, all bets are off. Selections include everything from fresh fruit to candy to sugary breakfast cereals. Again, customers serve themselves. When their creation is ready, they bring it to a cashier to be weighed and to check out. They can also have their frozen yogurt and toppings mixed into the store’s namesake, the Swizzle.
Kessner is passionate about frozen yogurt, insisting it’s not the same as when it was trendy in the 1980s.
“The product is so much better,” Kessner said. “That’s the major difference.”
In fact, he thinks it’s so much better that frozen yogurt will someday overtake ice cream.
“If there’s an ice cream shop on one side of the street and a frozen yogurt shop on the other, the current trend is to go toward the healthier alternative, which is frozen yogurt," he said. "Plus, it’s more fun.”
Kessner expects the interior of the Winchester store to be similar to his other stores, with a line of self-serve frozen yogurt machines and toppings on one wall, cash registers on another, and tables filling in the remaining space.
“Wait till you see my feature wall – it changes color,” Kessner said. “It’s like a disco party.”
In addition to self-serve frozen yogurt, Swizzles offers frozen yogurt in pints, as well as frozen yogurt cakes and sandwiches. In the winter, Kessner plans to add a line of hot cocoa with self-serve toppings including whipped cream and marshmallows.
Kessner choice of Winchester as the location for his first Bay State Swizzles shop was very intentional.
“I look for great communities with a lot of families,” he said. While other shops focus on big cities, Kessner said, “I like to go out to a nice suburban town.”
The small Swizzles chain currently includes three stores in southern Connecticut, but is expanding rapidly. Kessner expects to open another store in Lexington after the Winchester location starts up.
“My goal is to open five to eight shops in Massachusetts in the next 12 months,” Kessner said.