Thursday, December 13, 2012

REVIEW: TCBY Chocolate Chunk Cookie Dough

TCBY, short for The Country's Best Yogurt, holds a special place in my heart. As a little tike, I used to frequent our city's local TCBY a few times a week. My grandmother would pick me up from elementary school often, and when she did, it was off to get a frozen treat. I explored the majority of the menu over the years, but once the recent fro-yo craze kicked in, TCBY stores became few and far between. In an attempt to compete with the brick and mortar self-serve locales popping up across the country, TCBY has begun to put their product into both carton and pint-sized portions for purchase at major supermarkets. While my favorite flavor used to be their White Chocolate Mousse, I chose their Chocolate Chunk Cookie Dough to act as my first taste of their pre-packaged material.

They've taken their basic low-fat vanilla frozen yogurt and filled the excess space with generous pieces of chocolate chunk cookie dough. Containing only 130 calories per serving, this is one of the lightest option I've covered thus far. As a major corporation, how does a mistake like the one above happen? Someone inside TCBY managed to miss the bold blue circle exclaiming this has 130 calories, while a few inches away the nutrition facts clearly state 140. Either way, with the entire pint coming in at just a little over 500 calories, it shouldn't be too difficult to fit in a few servings of this at any time.

With the top pulled off, the lightly-colored layer of vanilla frozen yogurt is only broken up by tiny bits of chocolate and small slivers of cookie dough. The first impression from the frozen yogurt comes from the sweetness, much more so than a standard vanilla ice cream. Although it contains only trace amounts of the complexity of a super-premium vanilla bean, the consistency is more than acceptable, and outperforms frozen dairy dessert by miles. The flavor isn't really reminiscent of the vanilla soft serve I enjoyed as a kid, but is assisted by the fact that nearly ever bite has chocolate chips included. These fudge pieces are so small and flat that they melt quickly, leaving the back end of each bite with a rich, chocolatey aftertaste.

Every third bite or so, a lump of the chocolate chunk cookie dough came into play. These slightly dense cookie dough balls weren't quite up to the stellar standards of Häagen-Dazs and Graeter's, but weren't terribly far behind either. Much like in Ben & Jerry's Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, TCBY decided to include their chocolate chips inside the dough, as well as in the vanilla base. The consistency was hindered a bit by the strict caloric restrictions, but worked well with the overall healthy feel of this flavor. Although this isn't something I'd make a staple, Chocolate Chunk Cookie Dough was a nice change of pace and lacked the typical guilt associated with downing an entire pint of a super-premium product. Unfortunately, this just wasn't able to come close to the other incredible cookie dough flavors on the market.

Where I Found It: Super Wal-Mart
Grade: D

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