Chobani in SoHo

Mark Abramson for the Wall Street Journal
By WSJ Staff - Visitors and residents of SoHo, drawn to the neighborhood’s chic stores, soon will be able to sample a different kind of culture. Popular yogurt brand Chobani is planning to open a yogurt bar in the neighborhood later this month. It will mark the company’s first attempt to sell its wares directly to customers fast-food style. Chobani yogurt now is mostly sold in grocery stores.

Unlike frozen yogurt places, the Chobani store on West Broadway and Prince Street will sell the company’s Greek yogurt, which has seen increasing sales in the U.S. Customers will be offered chilled yogurt with an array of Mediterranean-style mix-ins, including toasted coconut, pineapple, figs and honey.

The store’s design will be “a combination of a chic farmhouse with Mediterranean influences,” filled with wooden details that are meant to evoke the brand’s upstate New York dairy manufacturing facility and allow patrons to “experience yogurt at its purest form,” according to Annette McGuinness, Chobani’s chief image officer.

Chobani leased 525 square feet at 150 Prince St., where it will pay $375,000 a year in rent, according to Christopher Owles, the broker who represented the store’s landlord in the deal.

The company, which is based in Norwich, N.Y., also is leasing 11,000 square feet of office space nearby, at 72 Spring St., which will partly be used as a sales office. Mr. Owles represented Chobani in that deal.

Some SoHo denizens say they feel that a yogurt shop is a little down-market for a neighborhood where stores selling the latest fashions attract the global glitterati.

“There’s flavor in yogurt, but no style,” says Sean Sweeney, director of the SoHo Alliance, a community group. “Maybe if they put diamond dust or gold leaf in it they’ll do better in SoHo.”

But Ms. McGuinness said the Chobani shop will fit in nicely.

“SoHo is authentic and innovative, just like Chobani. It’s a fast-paced, current, global neighborhood with lots of style,” she said in an email.

—Kelsey Gee
Last modified onSaturday, 06 May 2017 10:07