VIEW: Fueled by fro-yo

Brian & Carlie Ball tell the story behind The Twisted Berry, Revelstoke’s new frozen yogurt and crepe food truck

By Imogen Whale

It started as an adventure. Carlie and Brian Ball uprooted themselves from Vancouver and left behind their respective careers in residential painting and landscaping to move to Revelstoke. They would dive straight in and start their food truck business, The Twisted Berry.

“We knew we wanted to be in the interior,” Brian explains. “We needed a change. All of our hobbies; fishing, hiking, skiing, hunting to name a few, had us leaving the lower mainland every chance we got anyhow.”

“As much as we love Vancouver, we were craving a sense of community. The traffic, commuting, the impossible real estate market – it made sense to leave,” Carlie adds.

The two had previously spent a winter in Revelstoke and saw the opportunities here and the room to keep booming and growing.

“We knew when we made our decision to come here, we were jumping in and committing,” says Carlie. “We met more people here in the first two weeks than we had in Vancouver in the last six months.”

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Photo: Customers place their order at the Twisted Berry location next to Grizzly Plaza.

Before leaving the Lower Mainland, the outgoing couple had to decide what they would do to make a living when they moved to Revelstoke, and a food truck came to mind.

After plenty of research, they headed to southern Washington with the plan of buying a truck they had found on Kijiji. The trip turned into its own adventure.

“You have to imagine little Mexico,” Brian says. “It wasn’t like being in Washington at all.”

The truck needed much more work than was advertised and was being kept in a junkyard, so Brain and Carlie spent the next two days in negotiations before the truck was purchased. While negotiating, Brian and Carlie’s jeep went missing. They were stressed it had been stolen, but in actuality it was mistaken for a write off, picked up by a massive loader with their dog inside, and brought into the junkyard.

“The jeep did look like maybe it should be in a junkyard,” Brian jokes. Their beloved dog Ringo and the jeep were fine and an acceptable price on the truck was reached.

Brian and Carlie got to work fixing the truck. Once they were finished, the food to be served and the destination chosen, The Twisted Berry came to life.

“It’s called The Twisted Berry because this massive reverse looking drill press twists the frozen yogurt bars and the frozen fruit together,” Brian explains as he points to the frozen yogurt making machinery. It comes out looking like a soft serve ice cream.

The Twisted Berry sells frozen yogurt, smoothies and milkshakes in a variety of mix and match flavours, from raspberry to chocolate, oreo to cherry, or coffee to mint. Carlie and Brian are always experimenting and plan on creating a maple flavoured yogurt for Canada 150 celebrations. They also bake their own delicious waffle cones and crepes.

“The fact that we have sweet and savoury crepes surprises some people,” Carlie says. “But you can come here for lunch and dessert.”

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Photo: The author’s son Logan tries a frozen yogurt from the Twisted Berry.

So how does their food fare in a taste test? It passes with flying colours.

On a warm day, after forgoing breakfast, I walked my toddler Logan downtown to where The Twisted Berry is parked, right off of Grizzly Plaza, and ordered us a mix of goodies.

First, we tried a crepe stuffed with bananas and covered in condensed milk. I didn’t know what to expect and didn’t anticipate enjoying this dish as much I did. The savoury crepes sounded great so I ordered a vegetarian option filled with tomatoes, mozzarella, basil and vinaigrette reduction. It was light and scrumptious; the perfect summer lunch.

A chocolate/mint frozen yogurt in a fresh waffle cone completed my binge. I planned on sharing my desert with my youngest, but after a couple of licks Logan bogarted the entire thing.

A couple of days later I took my eldest, Rowan, for a frozen yogurt after school. He doesn’t like yogurt and felt pretty sure this excursion was a wasted treat opportunity. With a sigh of resignation he settled on vanilla/oreo. He scrutinized Brian as the dessert was being made and asked questions about the machinery. Then Rowan tried the yogurt.

“This is the best!” he declared as he tried to avoid his little brother’s attempts to help himself. Since then, my loyalty card has filled up with disconcerting speed. Frozen yogurt is a big hit with my family.

Carlie and Brian have only been in town for 1.5 years but they’re committed to Revelstoke and are happy with the success of The Twisted Berry. “We probably had easier ideas for a business, but none would have been as fun,” laughs Brian.

The Twisted Berry is parked next to Grizzly Plaza from Wednesday to Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Look for them on Facebook or at thetwistedberry.com.

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