The frozen yogurt has taken Kingston by storm since the opening of Tutti Frutti in Loshusan Plaza in May 2013. And thanks to Peter and Phillip Azar, owners of the franchise, children and adults alike have been enjoying the new and novel “ice cream shop” concept. There has been a consistent inﬂux of people at all hours of the day (yogurt for lunch anyone?) and if you dare to venture out on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday night, then you may mistake it for one of the hottest night clubs in Kingston. Why?Because the line is at least 20 people strong, waiting for the security guard to give them permission to enter.
People obviously think that it’s worth the wait, possibly because 60 different ﬂavours of yogurt are sold (a choice of 12 ﬂavour combinations at one time) includ-ing dairy-free, sugar-free and soy, and more than 30 different toppings to choose from. The beauty of a visit to Tutti Frutti is that the entire experience is designed to please the customer. You chose the ﬂavour or ﬂavours of yogurt of your liking and then add one, none or all the toppings that you desire, and then your cup is weighed and priced accordingly. So, whether you are craving a bite or a bucket of your favourite ﬂavours, it doesn’t matter, because there is something for everyone. Peter Azar tells us more.
Why did you decide to bring Tutti Frutti to Jamaica?
We were customers of Tutti Frutti while in Los Angeles and Florida, and our kids went every day, sometimes twice a day… ..and they loved every minute of it. The whole concept was just so new and fresh, and we loved the philosophy of Tutti Frutti’s parent company that focuses on clean and healthy living to a great extent.
Tell us a little about the Tutti Frutti Concept.
It’s all about the simple feeling of freedom that you get from being in a Tutti Frutti store. You are free from poor service and unhappy faces. Tutti Frutti gives the con-sumer the power to choose, the power to take a lot today or a little tomorrow. It’s a great feeling.
What has been you biggest challenge so far?
The initial investment was very challeng-ing because of machinery cost, and the franchise fees to get sole distributorship for Jamaica. The set-up of the store was very tough too, because we stuck to extremely rigid guidelines and did every-thing top of the line. The importation criteria were diﬃcult too, but we got a lot of assistance from the Jamaica Manufac-turers Association (JMA), the Trade Board, and the Ministry of Agriculture. It is much better than a year ago, but still a bit challenging, at times, time, as well as, the combinations.
What was the inspiration for the décor? Did you have to follow any company guidelines or were you able to add your personal style to the de-signs?
We started out with franchise guidelines, but Judy Azar really took the task of making it her own and shaped it to be the clean space it is today. She specializes in that type of clean renovation and did a fantastic job.
What are the plans for the future?
I am happy to say that we have about six offers for franchises islandwide, but im-mediate plans are to perfect our current store. That’s really what it’s about; per-fecting the product, perfecting the service, and perfecting the experience that our valued customers get when they enter a Tutti Frutti store.