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A new low-fat, low-calorie frozen dessert alternative will soon be available in New Haven for those with a sweet tooth for flavors like Creme Brulee and Pumpkin Pie.

Connecticut’s first Tasti D-Lite frozen yogurt store will open at 45 High St. sometime in mid-April, owner Carole Chu ’92 said. The chain, which originated in New York in 1987, currently operates only in New York, New Jersey and Florida.

Chu, who lived in New York for several years after graduating from Yale, said she wanted to open a Tasti D-Lite in New Haven partly because it was one of the things she missed most about living in the city.

“It’s a great pick-me-up,” she said. “It’s like a cult in New York.”

Chu said she loved the range of flavors and light taste of Tasti D-Lite products and hopes the chain will become as popular in New Haven as it has elsewhere. Tasti D-Lite, which describes itself as “The All Natural Alternative,” has been especially popular among the health-conscious because it is low in calories and 99 percent fat free, with only 10 calories per ounce for its vanilla flavor. It does not use artificial flavors and colors, or additives and preservatives.

Marta Herschkopf ’06 said she enjoys Tasti D-Lite frozen yogurt because it is a quick snack that is low in calories but is also filling. She said it would be a good addition to New Haven and provide a unique alternative to current frozen dessert options.

“It has a cosmopolitan feel to it that candy stores or ice cream parlors just don’t have,” she said.

Herschkopf said a Tasti D-Lite is the sort of thing one would find only in an area that is extremely health-conscious.

But customers also said they enjoy the wide range of flavors at Tasti D-Lite. In addition to the standard chocolate and vanilla, Tasti D-Lite stores offer two of 100 other flavors — including Peanut Butter N’ Jelly, Coffee Espresso and Strawberry Shortcake — on a daily rotating basis.

Lindsey Counts ’07, who frequented Tasti D-Lite as often as once or twice a week when she was living in New York, said the multitude of flavors was the biggest attraction for her. She said the soft-serve chain was popular among her peers, and offered the best frozen yogurt she had ever tried.

“If you say the word ‘tasti’ to someone, they’ll know what you’re talking about,” Counts said.

John Wareck of Chapel Investment LLC, the firm that owns the property, said he thinks Tasti D-Lite is a fitting business for the location at 45 High St., whose previous tenant was Elm City Shipping. He said over the past two or three decades, there has been a “metamorphosis” of the Chapel Street area, and more retailers have taken an interest in coming to New Haven.

Wareck said the first time he went to New York to investigate the frozen yogurt chain, he was amazed at the sight of a long line of people standing outside a Tasti D-Lite despite the cold weather.

“Anything that brings people and foot traffic and that sort of energy to the block is good,” he said.

Wareck said Tasti D-Lite would probably face some competition from other frozen dessert shops in the area, such as Ashley’s or Coldstone Creamery, but that it was hard to make comparisons because Tasti D-Lite offers such a unique product.
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