Busy time for one of the country’s favorite frozen yogurt chains. 16 Handles is not only pleasing people with it’s pumpkin pie flavor, it’s also going from national to international in the next week.
The business is announcing the opening of three new locations in Saudi Arabia. This is part of a development deal that calls for 150 stores to open in the Mideast over the next 10 years. 16 Handles founder/CEO Solomon Choi says “the Middle East is a great opportunity for the company to bring frozen yogurt to a year-round hot climate. Right now as much of the US is starting to feel the Fall weather set in, temperatures in Saudi Arabia are hovering in the 100’s during the day. What better way to cool off than a cool treat?”
Choi, and the team that was awarded the master franchise rights (Abu Issa Marketing and Distribution, LLC), have already looked at 30 potential locations in Saudi Arabia, Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Qatar. The first three locations opening are in Saudi Arabia. They are in the Haifaa Mall (Jeddah), Tala Mall (Riyadh) and Roshana Mall (Jeddah).
There will be some differences between the 16 Handles here in the states and those in the Middle East. Custom flavors for the region like Baklava, Turkish Roast Coffee, and Pistachio will appear alongside classic 16 Handles flavors such as Tahitian Vanilla Bean, Fudge Brownie, Salted Caramel and more. Fresh juices, coffee/tea, cakes and other plated desserts will also be available.
The company worked with leading global design company, Zebra to help the brand smoothly set-up shop in the Middle East. Zebra has designed projects globally including Shake Shack and PF Changs. The firm has expertise in translating the experience of western brands within the cultural framework of countries throughout the Middle East.
Choi says, “We worked with the designers to create an upscale café environment and to provide ample seating since most families go to the malls several times a week for several hours at a time to escape the heat.”
Back here in the United States as the heat moves out, the fall weather is settling in and that means everyone is pumped for pumpkin. The lifestyle chain has a new pumpkin pie flavor called “Oh My, Pumpkin Pie.” It’s unlike any other pumpkin soft serve. The Artisan creation is made at 16 Handles creamery with real pumpkin, spices and actual bits of freshly baked graham cookies. It’s as if the popular fro-yo chain took your grandmother’s classic homemade pumpkin pie recipe and turned it into a creamy frozen yogurt treat.
16 Handles founder/CEO Solomon Choi says, “We know pumpkin’s popular and we got tired of tasting all the artificial flavorings out there. Nobody could get pumpkin right – so we decided to perfect it!”
The team worked closely with their chef to create the best tasting pumpkin flavor on the market. “Compare ‘Oh my, Pumpkin Pie’ to any of our competitors and I guarantee you’ll be coming back for more!,” says Choi.
So whether in the Middle East, or in the Northeast here in the United States, this is a great time for frozen yogurt fans.