It’s not easy to create a truly unique ice cream experience, but that’s exactly what 24-year-old Andy Chen and his partner, Nick Ni, have done with Ice Lab, the newest snacking experience on Franklin Street.
Featuring rolled ice cream, Chen says the idea originated online, where he first saw the newest ice cream trend. However, finding the tools necessary to create it proved to be more difficult.
Rolled ice cream originated in southeast Asia and was called “Thai fried ice cream.” The treat is poured in liquid form onto a freezing cold metal surface, which got its name because it looks like a grill. Instead of heat, however, the surface is well below zero. The ice cream is then kneaded and spread into a thin layer, before being pushed into tight rolls with a spatula.
The Ice Lab has a myriad of toppings, ranging from chocolate chips to Pocky sticks. With the first three toppings included, there's a seemingly endless number of combinations.
Chen said they ordered a machine that mixes the ice cream base from China because they couldn't find it in America. Customers can choose from a myriad of ingredients to create their own flavor. The last step is the key: rolling a thin layer of ice cream into its characteristic shape.