Making up for lost time at Spoon Street
Unpopular opinion alert – I’m really not a fan of ice cream. At all. Frozen yogurt, however, is a treat I can get behind. For all of the reasons I dislike ice cream, frozen yogurt typically fills the void its lesser dessert cousin leaves – it offers a lovely tartness, isn’t too sweet, and is much lower in calories than ice cream, meaning it delivers a dessert I can feel a bit less guilty about. So when the frozen yogurt shop Spoon Street hit my radar (a bit late), I was more than keen to give the East Belfast establishment a try.
My first Spoon Street experience was nothing short of magical (as was my second, third, fourth, fifth…you get the picture). Upon entering the shop decorated in a bright and colourful motif, you realise that this place really doesn’t take itself too seriously. From the 90’s favourites playing on the sound system to Frozen playing (on mute, thankfully) on the giant TV screen in an area which is perfect for the kids, the shop was perfectly balanced between adult and grown up, adding appeal for the whole family. And with late-night hours to 10pm, I predict this Upper Newtownards Road establishment will be a favourite for families and singles alike throughout the summer.
The first stop on the multi-coloured journey of Spoon Street is to pick your tub size. Word of advice – go up a size. Don’t think you’re going to eat that much? Opt for the medium sized tub. By the time you’ve made your way down the topping bar, you’ll wish you had.
The next step is to choose your yogurt flavour from the wall of 16 DIY dispensers. Spoon Street offers a wide range of flavours ranging from the traditional plain yogurt (my favourite) to fruit flavours and kookier ones including my husband’s favourites, salted caramel and cupcake batter. They also offer a range of dairy-free options as well as flavours sweetened with stevia, meaning dietary needs are catered for. The flavours are also rotated out frequently, so each visit to Spoon Street will offer new possibilities of combinations.
Following your yogurt choice, the next stop on the journey to Spoon Street bliss is to shimmy your way down the fully-stocked toppings bar. Bursting with healthier toppings options including coconut, nuts, and fruit as well as unique ‘juice balls’ – spheres bursting with fruit juices – and old favourites like gummy cola bottles, Maltesers, sprinkles, M&M’S and more, again, you’re given the option of a fully customisable treat. You can be as naughty as you want to be!
Opting to keep it simple and enjoy the flavour of the yogurt itself, my Spoon Street creation included plain yogurt, sliced strawberries, dark chocolate chips and cashew nuts (and a few cheeky bits of Reese’s peanut butter cup). A sensible dessert with a low guilt factor – the best kind of dessert in my eyes. My husband, however, went all out and opted for half cupcake batter and half salted caramel yogurt, a range of gummy sweets, sprinkles, juice balls and Oreo cookies.
When you reach the end of the toppings bar, your yogurt is placed onto the Spoon Street scale, which determines the cost of your dessert based on the weight of the yogurt and toppings you’ve chosen. Again, it’s all very straightforward – take as much or as little as you want, and pay for exactly that.
Much of the Spoon Street experience is about the customisation and combinations you can create when building your own treat, but their frozen yogurt also lives up to its hype with its lovely flavours. The original yogurt flavour offered a perfect balance between tartness and sweetness against a gorgeous creamy background. My choice of toppings included the perfect contrast, offering a bit of crunch with the cashew nuts and bitter dark chocolate chips as well as adding sweetness with the ripe strawberries, which froze slightly once placed on top of the yogurt. With each unique flavour crafted internally in Spoon Street’s kitchen, you can rest assured that this company is selling a locally-crafted product developed on-site and made with love and care.
With additional Belfast establishments jumping on the frozen yogurt band wagon (albeit about 15 years too late) including Lisburn Road’s Yogland and North Belfast’s YogieBerrie, Spoon Street has set the bar high. Spoon Street is a perfect combination of grown up and child-like, offering a make-your-own adventure experience fit for the whole family. And with the introduction of their new app which promises to reward frequent visitors, this will be one obsession that will pay off!
By Brittany Breslin
Follow Brittany on her journey as a food reviewer for Belfast Times in her BBEats column.