When I first saw images of Thai ice cream rolls pop up on the ‘gram, I was mesmerized—how on earth could ice cream be molded into such compact rolls, pressed together, and then decorated to a point that they looked too ornate to eat?
I had been dying to try the creation, but at the time, all of the ice cream locations that made this exquisite treat were located in the OC, and I wasn’t heading down there as frequently as I do now that my sister’s in the area.
I did get a chance to try a cookie-butter themed cup of the stuff at the OC Night Market a few months ago, thanks to the Blue Nova food truck. And while I complained in my recap post of the event that it took forever and a day for the cup to be prepared, I realized how much effort is actually required when I paid a visit to a new, local-to-me ice cream shop that is crafting up this frozen treat for the denizens of LA.
Cold Rolled Ice Cream Co. has only been open for a handful of weeks, but by the way their shop on Melrose looks, you’d think they’ve been in the business for ages.
I stopped by on a slightly cool Saturday afternoon for LA, and was able to meet with one of the four shop owners, Tim. He was eager to share the history of Cold Rolled, and it was obvious to me that he had a passion and the expertise for all things ice cream.
Some highlights of the shop included:
~ A variety of ice cream base options, including all-organic, vegan and non-dairy choices.
~ A number of opportunities to mix and match ice cream flavors and toppings, since Cold Rolled offers 20 flavors and 50+ toppings.
~The emphasis on making the ice cream-making process an interactive one with the customer: each order is made fresh, and the customer’s name is even spelled on the ice cream before rolling.
~The mural walls decorating the interior of the shop, painted by local street artist Jonathan Cirlin
After speaking with Tim outside the shop, he asked if I’d like to try some ice cream and I was quick to respond absolutely!
There were separate rolling stations positioned behind a glass counter, with staff members rolling out tailored creations for customers right before their eyes.
I decided to go with the Matcha Green Tea Premium Creation, which combined a matcha green tea base, red bean paste, and toppings like mochi and green tea Pocky.
When one of the staff members assigned to making my cup was ready, he motioned for me to come close to the counter so I could watch ice cream magic happen right before my eyes.
It started off with a mash of green ice cream, which was then pummeled back and forth. The clashing of stainless steel tools is a common sound around these parts, haha!
Next, the ice cream “puree” was smoothed out , and allowed to freeze flat on the circular metal tray.
Before rolling out the frozen rectangle into mini rolls, my name was spelled out with condensed milk, making it a more interactive experience.
Each roll was placed tightly in a circular arrangement inside a cup, and topped with condensed milk and toppings.
I then allowed my cup a few minutes in the spotlight before devouring its contents in mere seconds.
The rolls were frozen firm, and had a mild green tea flavor. I have to be honest and say I was focused on getting to all the mochi pieces first, but after that was taken care of, I was able to devote my attention to the part of the frozen creation that required the most effort. Overall, it was the perfect treat for a slightly cool but sunny Saturday afternoon in LA.
Cold Rolled is definitely a sweet addition to Melrose Ave., and I’m certainly glad I don’t have to make the trek down to OC (at least) every time I have a craving for ice cream rolls!
Disclaimer: I was not provided compensation except for product samples for review by Tenzo Tea, and all opinions are my own.
There was once a time I used to be OBSESSED with matcha green tea. When I was in undergrad, the only drink I would get at Starbucks would be a matcha green tea latte. There was something about that earthy green color, combined with a milky tea taste and warm froth that was just so comforting. I must add however that this was all before I developed a liking for coffee. I actually had my first cup of black coffee during grad school interviews and (with two packets of sweetener) it didn’t taste as bitter as I’d imagined.
I bring up coffee because it sort of got in the way when it came to my drink choices for some time. There was a whole world of coffee and coffee drinks that I was eager to try, that I left green tea and tea drinks to the side.
But the reach of green tea has expanded a lot since then. Now there are matcha shops in LA and probably other major cities. Matcha green tea is staking its claim, and companies like Tenzo Tea are aiding the effort.
I was able to sample and review a variety box last month, featuring a number of flavors. All of the packs have matcha green tea powder, but some are even flavored. In my box, I had Premium, Latte, Raspberry, Blueberry, Blend, and Organic flavor packs.
On the back, it gives simple instructions on how to use the packs to make a hot cup of tea. I had to go to lab the weekend before leaving to Tulsa. As a pick-me-up of sorts, I mixed a Blueberry pack with some hot water, and put it in a ceramic thermos my friend gave me for my birthday.
To be honest, I was expecting a blue powder and a blueberry flavor to totally overwhelm any hint of green tea, but the powder was pure green, and one would not suspect any added blueberry. Unfortunately, I didn’t taste any blueberry either.
I brought some packets with me to incorporate in meals when I was on vacation. All of them happened to be breakfast meals too!
I had some mixed with some waffle mix, and as a result, had waffles with a green hue. I think an extra packet of matcha would have made this waffle as green as grass.
I already knew protein powder mixes so well with yogurt, but what about matcha? To answer that question, I mixed the blend with key lime Chobani. Topped with some Krave cereal, it made for a delicious morning treat.
Then there was oatmeal. The latte blend (one packet) made this bowl beautifully green. I added it in after cooking the oats in some milk. I also topped it with some craisins.
I gifted some of the duplicates I got to family friends, and they were definitely intrigued. They are tea drinkers, so I’m sure they’ll enjoy these Tenzo tea packets as much as I did!
Sometimes, it can be hard to resist even the smallest of sweet cravings. Saturday was just one of those days I felt like having dessert as my main meal, and even if it was past the “normal” breakfast time frame, pancakes were just calling my name…
It may have been a length journey traveling to Burbank via public transit (almost two hours!), but when I made it to Bea Bea’s, all seemed right with the world 🙂
I made it in an hour before closing at 4pm, and was able to get a table and plenty of time to look at the menu. They had daily specials that sounded appetizing, but I was definitely here for the one and only Matcha Green Tea Monster.
These green-tea infused pancakes with marscapone, white chocolate chips, and whipped cream were almost too beautiful to eat. I’m not even sure why syrup was given on the side—totally unnecessary, and such a distraction 😉
I tried the marscapone/whipped cream first on its own, and then lathered that all over the pancakes anyway because it was rapidly melting. I doubted the fact that there were white chocolate chips mixed in, but I soon spotted the familiar shape poking through.
So I was back on the bus, this time off to Glendale to check out the Sprinkles location at Americana at Brand.
It was 5pm by the time I got there, but it felt like mid-summer, especially with the crowds.
Unlike the Beverly Hills location, this Sprinkles was styled like a kiosk, with the only seating some outdoor tables close by.
The cupcakes were prominently displayed behind a curved window that followed alongside the queue.
But with a menu in hand with the daily cupcake and ice cream flavors, I knew exactly what my cupcake sundae would consist of.
On a late-September day that felt like mid-July, the only way to bring back the autumn mood was with a pumpkin cupcake and caramel ice cream.
My favorite part of these cupcake sundaes is obviously the top with the frosting and all. Frosting > cake in my opinion 😉
I enjoyed my autumn-inducing dessert near the main fountain, since all of the Sprinkles-designated seats were taken. A security officer even took notice of my sweet treat, and paid her compliments 😛 .
Surprisingly, my sugar cravings commenced as I finished the last morsel of my cupcake sundae. I guess I had my fill, and was ready to head back home knowing I was able to successfully appease my sugar cravings.
No shame in a little sugar indulgence now and then—especially if it’s a Saturday, and if the word cake is involved 🙂 !