Love’s Yogurt in Wilmette Review – Thirty Years Old and Moving Forward

I had plans for lunch with a friend.  Learning that she is in her 6th decade and had never tasted frozen yogurt, the obvious place to go was Love’s Yogurt in Wilmette.

 

Love's now Freshly Opened

However, when we arrived, separately, each of us was initially startled to find the shop closed.  Luckily a cute sign pointed us around the corner to the new and improved Love’s that now boasts 2500 square feet with additional food and a modernized approach to serving. Now salads and yogurt are self serve and charged by weight.

 

Owner Jami Bay and Manager Jose Merlos

Stepping inside, it felt very clean, attractive and open.  We stepped to the counter to order our food.  There were lots of choices on the chalkboards on the back wall.  We met owner, Jami Bay and his long time manager and all around helper, Jose Merlos.

 

Ordering food

My friend ordered tuna salad.  She said it was very pleasant and proceeded to “clean her plate”.

 

Yummy tuna salad

I needed a dish that was vegetarian and gluten-free and I had many choices.  I tasted the vegetarian chili and it was delicious but it wasn’t what I wanted at that point.  More appealing was the veggie wrap in a spinach tortilla.  I really enjoyed the contrast of the freshly chopped fresh crispy vegetable with dressing and the softer, milder tortilla.  I had to take half of it home since it was very filling.

Some choices for the wrap

 

Yummy wrap-vegetarian and gluten-free

We also enjoyed a delicious Latte.  It was not too crowded but the patrons who were there are regulars who appreciate the fresh, wholesome and flavorful food that never disappoints.  We enjoyed the opportunity to chat and not feel crowded or rushed.

 

Latte

And then-ta da- time for the first taste of frozen yogurt.  Sharon, my friend, chose her favorite yogurt from the large selection along one wall.  And then she selected chocolate sprinkles and a slice of kiwi.  What a treat.

 

Jami helps Sharon select her first frozen yogurt

Serve yourself

I selected a sugar free, low fat, flavor, and topped it with sugar-free hot fudge. It was delicious and I ate “the whole thing”. I also learned that the yogurt is gluten-free and kosher.  Many diabetic customers are thrilled to have a place to get a dessert they can enjoy.

 

Note: “There are12 different flavors of frozen yogurt (including low fat, fat-free, sugar-free and tart), soft serve gelato, an island in the middle of the restaurant with over 50 different toppings (including candy, sprinkles, dried fruit, fresh fruit, granola, cereal, hot fudge - regular and sugar-free/fat-free, caramel, marshmallow sauce, and more!) plus dozens of healthy food options and all are kosher and Gluten-free”.

 

 

During our visit I had the opportunity of speaking with Jami Bay. He shared his story about how he first became involved with Love’s Yogurt and how it is that he became the “ Mr. Love’s Yogurt” that he is today. He first became involved in Love’s Yogurt as an investor.   He wasn’t expecting to be involved with operations but he found that he needed to assume a more active role to protect his investment. After thirty years, the Wilmette Love’s Yogurt is taking off with a new look that could be a model for some of the other stores. Love’s Yogurt has been a franchise.  The first store opened in Glenview, the next in Highland Park and the third in Wilmette.  It has been located downtown and in Old Orchard. Bay’s involvement has changed through the years so that he took over the entire franchise but at this point he owns the Wilmette and Highland Park shops and the others are franchised out.

 

Joshua Bay- Photo credit: Jami Bay

Jami Bay is a very proud family man with a lovely wife and twin 16-year old boys. One of his sons, Joshua works in the Highland Park store.

 

A stop at the Wilmette Love’s Yogurt is sure to surprise and delight whether for lunch, dinner or yogurt.  And they also do catering. Sharon and I can't wait to return to try a new yogurt flavor.

 Love's Yogurt in Wilmette

 

 

Photos:  B. Keer unless otherwise noted.

 

 

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