words LUCY OHLSEN
Nancy’s yogurt has gone Greek.
I saw their ad in the Eugene Weekly this morning, and I couldn’t quite hold screams from my angsty tastebuds. The lustful devils perpetually percolated drool as I stared in deep contemplation.
Just about this time last year, I visited Nancy’s yogurt factory and got a tour of the inner workings of the dairy trade. My experience deepened the love I had already cultivated for the Springfield creamery, but I remember being disappointed when I asked my tour guide (Sheryl Kesey Thomson) a very forward question.
“Are you planning to make Greek yogurt anytime soon?”
Sheryl at that point brushed Greek yogurt off as a passing food trend. I accepted her position – though personally, Greek yogurt is one of the biggest staples in my everyday life. I was happy to keep Nancy’s yogurt a category apart from other yogurt brands, who all follow the market to reap the profit (fuck you, Lucerne). Nancy’s would be my non-Greek yogurt supplier, as well as that of the cold-curing, comfort-inducing drinkable kefir. So I was genuinely taken aback, and feeling slightly betrayed, when I opened the weekly to find that Nancy’s has joined the thick, creamy, protein-rich bandwagon.
Of the brands already on the market, Fage unilaterally dominates. Trader Joes’ brand comes in at a fairly close second. The rest (Chobani, Dannon, Lucerne, Oikos, Greek Gods, Voskos) all have major flaws. The two biggest components a Greek yogurt needs, in my professional opinion, are texture (very, very thick – so thick that visible mountains of snowy white pillows form when you spoon it out) and tang (so tangy that it takes a few minutes for your saliva to come to terms with the fact that this stuff takes time to savor properly).
So, Nancy’s Greek yogurt. To be honest, it did not quite live up to my standards. I have only tried one flavor so far (nonfat with strawberry fruit on the bottom), but it allowed me to reach some conclusions. The texture was perfect – thick as a yogurt can be without being cream cheese. However, the tanginess was seriously lacking, along with a general flavor shortcoming. I attribute Nancy’s generally with overwhelming tanginess (for the clearest evidence of this, taste their cottage cheese), so I was nearly incensed with the blandness their yogurt offered my tongue. The lack of flavor was somewhat remedied by the provision of the fruit at the bottom, which was, as with all Nancy’s fruit-on-the-bottom/top products, deliciously simple.
Nancy’s is definitely not the worst Greek yogurt out there, and I have a little inkling that their full-fat with honey version is probably much more up to par than the non-fat version. But for now, from atop my dairy queen throne, I pronounce Nancy’s Greek debut a mediocre addition to a generally seliably stellar line of milky (and soy-ie) goodness.