Visiting Yobu & Mei
Some of you know I have two jobs (away from blogging and podcasting), it was through one of these jobs that I first found out about Yobu.
We discussed an upcoming college event which unfortunately ended up not being possible for myself and Yobu to arrange. However I was invited to Yobu in Bournemouth to find out more about the new business.
Bournemouth is a lovely place and somewhere I had already planned to visit this summer, so my answer was a no brainer. Hell to the yes!
I planned a whole day in Bournemouth, and you can see more about the rest of my day in a future post, which will include seeing live music, walking on the beach and more.
Arriving at Yobu
I used my phone to find Yobu on the day, which is only a 3 minute walk from Bournemouth Gardens, so its not hard to find and is very central, being located on Gervis Place.
I entered Yobu to find a bright and welcoming venue. There was a variety of seating styles from barstool chairs and dinner table chairs to sofas. There was even a small area with reading books.
Mei (Owner and Creator of Yobu) welcomed me to Yobu. Its not often you get to meet a brand Creator! I spoke with Mei for a little while discussing our own experiences and roles, I was super pleased to have a positive reaction from a non mental health campaigner about my blog and podcast, it still feels strange to actually have positive reactions from people about mental health.
Originally from Taiwan, Mei worked in the pharmaceutical industry for 15 years before creating her own business. Mei, I have to say is a very impressive lady. She has also recently started working with local colleges to promote development of transferable and entrepreneurial skills to students.
This was new to me, I don't drink traditional tea or coffee. I don't go to those established coffee brand places. So a 'how do you want it menu' is a bit scary for me. But this one was very simple and being the cheap ass that I am I like to know what things will cost, which again is easy to see. The Yobu menu is very simple which helped me when ordering, the four steps are easy to see and understand, along with the 2 prices.
Yobu, comes from frozen yogurt and bubble tea, which are the main two items on the menu. Though there are other items on the expanding menu too. You HAVE to try the ice cream waffles!
Ok so this isn't tea as you know it. Bubble Tea is more a refreshing flavoured fruit or milk tea. Bubble tea is served cold or hot with chewy tapioca balls at the bottom. Its the best tea I've ever had.
This is lovely, but you've got to pick the right flavour for you! hahaha. I tried a small spoon of a few flavours, one was very much not for me, but two were really good. So I recommend picking something you are going to like. Then get loads!
Ice Cream and Waffles
BUY THIS, EAT IT, BUY MORE!
I was in Yobu for about 90 minutes and there was a constant flow of customers. Particularly those aged around 10 to 20. Which kind of surprised me. But I think that is because this isn't pub waffles, its not 'costabucks' tea / coffee. Its somewhere that welcomes customers to a 'home away from home' and thanks to their brand card knows customers by name. There is also a strong social media presences and a cool customer photo wall, which has helped to quickly create a strong rapport with customers and a following that is not to be ignored. Already one customer has a Yobu tattoo!
The Bournemouth venue has already held a DJ set and a film launch. Additionally a new Yobu has recently been opened in Basingstoke.
My view, this is a very cool place to be. Bubble tea, while being the best tea I've ever had isn't something I am going to drink loads of, but I can see that it is already very popular with young people. The frozen yogurt and ice cream waffles however... Lets just say I'm lucky this place is in Bournemouth, or I would be there everyday!
The customer interaction is second to none and the outreach Mei, in particular, is doing is very impressive and important for a progressive business.
I am grateful to have had the opportunity to visit Yobu, to have spent time with Mei and I look forward to visiting again in the future.
Yobu is clearly a growing brand, expect to see more from them in the future.
Theres a cool article in the Bournemouth Daily Echo about Mei and the growing Yobu brand from October 2016. Along with a followup article from January 2017, which you can access by clicking on the image below from Bournemouth Echo.