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The Davis Square Froyo invasion

In case you haven’t heard, there’s a new frozen yogurt joint in town! I’m not talking about iYO Café, the also relatively new froyo place many of us were excited to find in Davis Square on our arrival to campus at the beginning of the semester. Another place has just moved in behind the Starbucks in Davis; it’s called Orange Leaf.

Maybe it’s just me, but there seems to be a pattern that accompanies the opening of frozen yogurt places: when one opens up, more often than not another opens in the same area. Inevitably, it also seems that one of those froyo place emerges over the other as the crowd favorite. Which will be the favorite in this case: iYO or Orange Leaf? I have a feeling it will be iYO, but both are great for different reasons.

Credit: thebostonfoodie.blogspot.com

Going on the yogurt alone (perhaps the most important criterion in evaluating both places), I would definitely say that Orange Leaf is comparable to iYO. It has just as many flavors, with everything from classic tart, chocolate, and vanilla to special seasonal flavors like pumpkin pie (which I got, swirled with oatmeal cookie. It was delicious!). There are slightly fewer toppings options at Orange Leaf, but overall the selection was pretty good, and I didn’t find myself wanting anything they didn’t have.

What sets iYO apart from Orange Leaf is the café aspect. This plays into both the atmosphere and, of course, the products served. In terms of atmosphere, iYO has a more relaxed, coffee shop feel, with hardwood floors, brown-colored walls, and a fireplace near the front. It’s an environment much more conducive to sitting down and enjoying your froyo (or coffee, waffle, quiche, soup, or fondue), whether with your friends, on a date, or while doing some studying.

Orange Leaf, on the other hand, has an atmosphere much more characteristic of a typical froyo chain (which it is—there are locations all over the Boston area and in other parts of the country). It has brightly colored walls of orange, red, and white mosaic and lime green. The tables and chairs are bright orange and low to the ground, not as ideal for studying in or for sitting in for a long period of time.

If you’re not in a rush, if you’re looking for a place where you can sit down while you eat, or if you’re going out with a group of people who might not all want froyo, you’ll probably want to go to iYO. iYO has more seating, the atmosphere there is more pleasing, and it offers a greater variety of choices. However, if you’re looking for a place to get a quick cup of froyo, by yourself or with friends, give Orange Leaf a try. The froyo is high quality, and the line there is likely to be shorter because there won’t be any people waiting for their latte to be made or for their soup to be poured. The choice is yours!

-Sara Pantel

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