It has long been a morning staple on tables across the nation, but yogurt isn’t just for breakfast.
The newest place to get a healthier sweet treat is Cool Spot, which recently opened in the shopping center across from Heritage High School.
“I’ve lived here for six years now, and this shopping center has been kind of empty for quite a while,” said Joe Matano, 36. “I wanted more for this part of the community, and I knew people were looking for more food concepts. The owners of the center wanted an ice cream or yogurt place, so it really was perfect timing.”
With seven years of experience in food-concept design and marketing for college campuses, Matano feels he has found a niche in offering what specific communities are seeking.
“The center should be full soon, and we are really trying to get people in here when school isn’t in session,” he said. “The area is right across from a school, which is great, but it’s also within walking distance from several nearby subdivisions.”
So far, public response to the innovative treat stop has been encouraging.
“This place is amazing,” wrote Jessica Barron in an online review. “The atmosphere is super cool, and I feel like whoever designed this place understands detail goes a long way. (They have an) amazing selection, and they have Dole whip. Sold; take my money! Their fresh selections are amazing, and they gained me as a costumer when I saw they had graham cracker dust.”
As customers continue to find and rave about Cool Spot, Matano wants those who haven’t to know he offers more than just the usual frozen yogurt. The store also has soft-serve gelato, sorbet and, occasionally, custard, including nondairy and allergen-sensitive options.
“We want to have flexibility in what we serve, not only in the types of products, but also in the flavors,” said Matano. “We cycle our flavors every two weeks, while keeping certain basic flavors, and we serve cookies from The Pacific Cookie Company, which we bake here. We’ll also be bringing in bulk candy soon.”
Currently, Cool Spot is offering free WiFi; $1 off with a Yelp review; a free cookie with a review on Facebook or Google; $5 Cup Night on Fridays, from 7 to 10 p.m.; and frequent-customer cards for a free cup after eight purchases. With plans for a grand opening, fundraising and sponsorships for local schools on the horizon, Matano hopes more people will stop by to see what delicious delicacies he has available.
“I hope I have created something appealing to everyone,” he said. “We’re not a chain or a franchise, so having local support means everything. We really want to become a big part of the community. Cool never tasted so good.”