Del Mar Swirls a favorite community sweet spot


By Karen Billing


Del Mar Swirls celebrated two years of sweet success on Nov. 16. The consistently delicious taste of its frozen yogurt is what keeps people coming back, said owner Evan Wilensky, who mixes a lot of the flavors himself.

“We come here a lot,” said admitted Swirls addict Amy Murphy, clutching her favorite cookies and cream yogurt, topped with cookie dough and crushed Oreos.

Wilensky, a 2002 graduate of Torrey Pines High School, runs the Del Mar shop as well as the Encinitas location. A third Swirls is opening in June 2011 in Carmel Valley’s Del Mar Highlands Town Center.

“I always wanted to be an entrepreneur and venture out into something,” Wilensky said of starting his own business.

He said while the stores have become very successful, that was never his main focus.

“I just got into something I had a passion for. I’m really happy with how it all turned out,” he said.

Swirls is self-serve, allowing customers to drizzle creamy yogurt into a cup and top with such treats as nuts, chocolate chips, freshly cut fruit and even syrups.

The topping bar offers more than 30 treats, including coconut shavings, juicy strawberries and hunks of cookie dough, which

Wilensky said is one of their most popular toppings.

Tasting cups are at the ready for customers to sample the rotation of 51 flavors, ranging from vanilla to Red Velvet. Flavors such as espresso, cookies and cream, dulce de leche, red velvet and peanut butter have found many fans.

Wilenksy notes that their tart flavors have also gained a following—a more natural plain yogurt taste that comes in variations of vanilla, pomegranate, kiwi and green apple.

Almost all of the yogurts are non-fat and a handful are 98 percent fat free.

“You don’t feel guilty after coming here,” said Noelle Fargo, a high school student who often comes on her lunch breaks.

Yogurt’s health claims to fame are even posted on the wall at Swirls: It’s a good source of protein, can help lower cholesterol, improves digestion, increases metabolism and stimulates the immune system.

Additionally, Swirls also offers non-dairy and no-sugar added flavors in the rotation.

What makes Swirls different from other yogurt shops is not only the taste but the presentation—the sparkling, white store is kept “surgically clean.”

“The staff keeps the place immaculate so that every customer has the exact same experience,” Wilensky said.

Visit Del Mar Swirls at 2683 Via de la Valle, suite E (near Albertsons). Winter hours are from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday through Thursday, and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday. For more information, visit