The area developer for Tasti D-Lite, the frozen dessert chain that became a low-cal sensation when it opened in New York 23 years ago, says he isn't worried about opening stores in a city dominated by yogurt shops.
"Let me tell you something," says Francisco Gomez-Palacio, a former telecom exec who's contracted to open 25 DFW stores over the next decade. "Most people like ice cream. If you don't like ice cream, you're a very weird person."
Yogurt, Gomez-Palacio says, is appreciated by only about half of the frozen dessert-eating public.
"It's fine. It's fun. Some kids like it," he says. "But I think the yogurt concept is going to fall down."
According to Tasti D-Lite, its products are "lower in calories, carbs and sugar than ice cream and leading frozen yogurt brands." But most New Yorkers already know that: Tina Fey summarized city-dwellers' obsession with the chain in a 30 Rock episode in which her character loses a wallet.
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"There's no money in it, but I was one hole-punch away from a free Tasti D-Lite," she moans. "I hate my life."
Gomez-Palacio confirms transplanted New Yorkers are eagerly awaiting the opening of the first Dallas-area store in Southlake in late February or mid-March.
"I was with my son at the dermatologist, and he asked me what I do," Gomez-Palacio says. "He went 'Wow! You need to open in Plano.'"
Gomez-Palacio hasn't yet scouted a Plano location, but plans to open a store at 8611 Hillcrest Road in March.