It all started in my teens when I took a job working at the very first Haagen Dazs on Columbus Avenue. Everyone told me that I would learn to hate ice cream after working with it everyday. Quite to the contrary, I actually became addicted. For years afterwards, I could devour an entire pint in one sitting (aren’t pints single servings??). Besides making me an addict, it also educated and spoiled me. From that point on I could only eat “premium” ice cream from Haagen Dazs to Berthillon in Paris.
Recently as I have adopted a “near vegan” diet and eliminated most dairy from my diet (I guiltily still indulge in small amounts of cheese once in a while), my ice cream addiction has led me to explore dairy options. I have tried and enjoyed different varieties of Soy Milk Ice Cream, Rice Milk Ice Cream and Coconut Milk Ice Creams. All different, all interesting and most importantly, they satisfy my addiction. However, a new kid on the block has arrived in the ice cream world and I have to give it a try.
The latest rage in the ice cream world is Nitro Ice Cream. Instead of using the traditional process of freezing and churning the ice cream over time, liquid nitrogen is introduced into the ice cream ingredients while it is mixing, which instantly freezes it. The advantage to this rapid freezing is that it eliminates ice crystals forming and produces a smoother and thicker ice cream. Although Nitro Ice Cream has been around for a little while in a few haute restaurants by inventive chefs, if has not been available to the public outside of that arena. All of that is beginning to change.
Nitro Ice Cream got the Luxury World’s attention with the opening last week of Europe’s first Nitro Ice Cream Parlor in London. Chin Chin Laboratorists, founded by Ahrash Akbari-Kalhur and Nyisha Weber has become the rage of London with their nitro ice cream creations. The other major advantage to making nitro ice cream in a parlour setting is that customers can concoct their own flavours and have it made instantly right before their eyes. Which started me exploring. Had this concept made it’s way to the USA? Interestingly enough, it has.
Nitro Magic Ice Cream, located in Williamsville, NY, peddles it’s
frozen treat by way of private events. They will actually bring the ingredients and process to you and make it for your guests, whether it is a small or large function.
Blue Sky Creamery started in Ames, Iowa and has a factory store in Ames as well as a location in the West Des Moines Mall. Like Nitro Magic, they also do private events. They have franchises in Missouri and their product can be found at 2 Donut Shops and in several retail outlets across the state. Currently, they also have franchises in Georgia and North Carolina that at this time only do private events. In addition, you can order theit nitro ice creams and gelatos on-line and they will ship it to you over-night in a special freezer container.
Both of these operations can only make you wonder when the nitro ice cream rage will come to a location near you. I definitely want to try this new entry into the dessert scene, but think that I would probably want to experience it live where it was actually being made. Knowing my travel habits, I most likely would be in London sooner than the US locations. Hmmmm, another reason to go to London. :) I will report back once I have had the pleasure of being Nitroed!!