Menchies: Seattle’s Newest Frozen Treat

Photo: Lindsay Borden

Queen Anne welcomes a new store from the nationally-renowned fro-yo favorite.

R&B artist Craig David might have originally coined the phrase, “What’s your flava?” — but these days, the quote could be attributed to Menchies Frozen Yogurt on Queen Anne. 

Photo: Lindsay Borden

Don’t answer the question too quickly – the selection of yogurt varieties offered by this Los Angeles-based franchise is growing on a daily basis. Of course, these are in addition to the fro-yo staple flavors and toppings galore. Thankfully, unlimited tasting cups are provided.

Menchie’s currently has locations in Federal Way and Vancouver, and two more will be arriving soon in Lynnwood and University Village. The prospect of getting your Mench on is become more convenient, just in time for summer heat waves.

The do-it-yourself concept that distinguishes the franchise was created by husband and wife team Adam and Danna Caldwell. The couple spent their first date dining at a frozen yogurt joint in LA. Soon, they fell in love — not just with each other, but also with the idea of running their own shop.

The Caldwells took their idea to the streets, and then the rest of the world. After being in business for only a few years, Menchies operates in 16 states, and more locations are on the way. The franchise can also be found internationally in nearby Canada, with forthcoming stores in far-off locales such as Japan, Morocco, Qatar, New Zealand and Australia.

So what’s the big global fuss about? Unlike other fro-yo chains, Menchies is solely DIY and prides itself as such. The one-cup-fits-all approach leaves the experience in the patron’s hands, with price entirely dependent on serving weight. Sampling cups are available for every flavor and topping they offer, optimizing their guests’ potential encounter to the fullest.

Photo: Lindsay Borden

The Breakdown:  Walk into the colorful wonderland that is Menchies on Queen Anne. Sanitize your hands at the dispenser first — since the place is scattered with kids fresh off the playground. Grab your bowl (waffle or custom), a handful of sample cups and begin the journey.

The Flavors: Chocolate, vanilla and tart yogurt flavors are always available. The rest are rotating, with a fluctuating low carb option as well. What’s on tap right now? Some of the available options include peanut butter, bubble gum, cupcake, mounds, cookies n’cream, mango passionfruit sorbet and low carb butterscotch. Like we said — eclectic.

The Toppings: This is where a dessert junkie might fall into a deep sugar coma. A communal gathering place for all things delicious, the Menchies’ toppings bar offers fresh fruit, roasted nuts, four different types of chips (chocolate, white chocolate, mint and yogurt), chocolate coated sunflower seeds, crushed Thin Mints and Nerds (whew!). Hot fudge, nonfat sugar-free hot fudge and caramel hold up the end of the bar — and customers always have the option to turn around and add more.

Queen Anne local Lauren Kron, 26, was ecstatic for the opening of Menchies on the hill. “This is exactly what Queen Anne needed,” Kron said. “For someone as picky as me, Menchies is tailored to each individual customer like me. You can create whatever you want.”

Mitch Flego and his eight-year-old daughter, Olivia, have frequented the fro-yo joint since it’s opening and has quickly become a favorite dessert excursion. “It’s a great snack or dessert offering, there’s healthier ways around it but there’s also guilty pleasure options too.”

This summer necessity is DIY dessert hedonism in its purest form. As such, Seattleite would like to issue a high glutton warning for Menchies, but trust us — this cool spot is worth the trouble of an extra workout the following day.

Menchies |  2101 Queen Anne Ave N., Seattle  |  (206) 216-1650