Ice Cream Works Review - Mumbai Boss

IceCreamWorksEDIT.jpgFrozen yoghurt may be the current darling of dessert junkies, but it can never replace good old-fashioned ice cream. Any doubts we had about ice cream’s waning popularity in Mumbai were quickly dispelled after a visit to Ice Cream Works, a week-old store in Shivaji Park which, incidentally, has opened next door to a Natural Ice Cream outlet.

Ice Cream Works is owned by the company that runs Cream Centre in Chowpatty. The launch of Ice Cream Works marks a full circle for the company; Cream Centre was originally an ice cream parlour when it first opened in 1958. A charmingly appointed store with a sky blue ceiling and illustrated white walls, Ice Cream Works boasts a long menu of sundaes, cassatas, and over 20 fruit and dessert-flavoured ice creams.

The selections are categorised into seasonal fruit flavours such as sitaphal and strawberry; Indian flavours including gajar halwa, kulfi and Calcutta meetha paan; the premium range that features strawberry cheesecake, caramel biscuit cream, mint brownie, and limetta mandarin; and Sin, which includes Bailey’s English cream and extreme Ferro hazelnut (it’s safe to presume it’s a variant of Ferrero Rocher). You can crown your ice cream with toppings like whipped cream, Gems, chocolate sprinkles, roasted nuts and fresh bananas. With so much on offer, choosing is difficult; it’s just as well that the genial staff is happy to give you a number of tastings. From this varied tasting, the strawberry cheesecake, hazelnut, Bailey’s, and paan flavours quickly emerged as our favourites.

The creamy Wimbledon strawberry cheesecake comes laced with a sweet and sour strawberry swirl made out of fresh strawberries, and contains clumps of the kind of crumbly biscuit that forms a cheesecake base. The hazelnut, priced at Rs88 for a scoop, is among the more expensive flavours, but totally worth the price. A rich milk chocolate ice cream, it’s speckled with shards of hazelnut and wafer biscuit. But if we had to restrain ourselves to just one flavour, we’d order the paan ice cream. A fun reinvention of the post-meal palate cleanser, this one comes mixed with real paan masala that has bits of the paan leaf, dal and fennel seeds. Of the eight or so flavours we sampled, the only flavour experiment we didn’t quite care for was the gajar halwa. The ice cream was cloyingly sweet and tasted nothing like the Indian dessert. From over five types of chocolate flavours sold here, we recommend their excellent toffee chocolate, which tasted remarkably like the sticky toffee that we loved as kids.

At Ice Cream Works you won’t find a paper menu just yet. The store manager said that they haven’t printed one because they weren’t sure about the kind of response they would receive. Judging by the mad rush we encountered there on both our visits, we have no doubt that they will soon be needing them. The parlour has a lot going for it: their flavours are innovative, they use real fruit and fruit pulp, and are judicious with their use of sugar. We only hope that they follow their fro-yo brethren and open outposts across the city.

Prices start at Rs38 for a single scoop. This review was conducted anonymously.

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