I-CE-NY Brings New Experience to Austin

By Srilekha Cherukuvada, Heritage Copy Editor, Horizon Weekly Editor

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Loud voices echoed alongside the busy food court of Lakeline Mall as a long line of customers emerged out of one particular store, all waiting to purchase some delicious rolled ice cream. I-CE-NY, a New York based ice cream franchise, recently opened up a shop in Lakeline Mall on March 9. Featuring popular signature flavors, such as the award-winning mango rolled ice cream, I-CE-NY has become a fan favorite in the Austin area. The rolled ice cream shop has over 18 different locations all across America.

The store is located close to Auntie Anne’s on the second floor of the mall. There was no seating area, but there was a long glass up front where customers could watch the employees make their ice cream. Customers swarmed this area, taking videos and pictures, as the rolling process was exciting to watch. Employees take the base flavor of ice cream and a mix in topping and pour them onto a large plate. The plate has a freezer beneath, that went to temperatures below zero degrees, causing the ice cream to be abnormally cold. The employees take a metal spatula and grind the two components together. Once that is done, they spread it out and roll up the ice cream, place it into a cup, and give it to another employee to add toppings. The whole process usually takes about five to six minutes for each ice cream, but due to the large amount of customers, it took about 20 minutes to get my ice cream. In the store, there were also two TVs for the menus and a mini Statue of Liberty on the opposite side to represent their New York roots. The new and trendy shop seemed to be quite busy throughout the day, considering I visited on a Saturday.

I-CE-NY is exclusively an ice cream shop, selling rolled ice cream and a variety of drinks that were later added on to the menu. However, the menu still boasted a huge variety of different flavors, including seven signature flavors and eight recommended flavors. Customers could also make their own mix and match ice cream with nine different bases,19 mix-ins, 26 toppings, and four drizzles. I chose the Want S’mores signature flavor, the Mango Sticky Rice ice cream, the To-Taro ice cream, and created my own ice cream. For the make your own, I chose a milk tea base, an oreo mix-in, and hershey bar, kit kat, and m&m toppings, as each mix and match only gets three toppings. For each ice cream, there was a fixed price of $6.25, which was pretty expensive for ice cream, but still worth the price because of the delicious flavors.

The four ice creams I tried were all unique in their own ways. I tried the Want S’mores signature flavor first. The luscious graham cracker and chocolate base ice cream was moist and sweet in contrast to the warm weather, and it melted in my mouth, cooling me down instantly. The toppings, a marshmallow, Hershey bar, and graham cracker, were delicately placed, giving the ice cream a cute, Instagram-worthy look. The flavors combined together so well, which is why I would recommend the signature flavors, as they are carefully planned out for maximum deliciousness.

The Mango Sticky Rice ice cream, another signature flavor, was slightly sour yet sweet and the sticky rice added to the overall flavor by providing something savory. It had a tropical flavor that was creamy with hard bits of mango in the middle. In all, this ice cream seemed to be well put together, living up to its award-winning name from food critics across the U.S.. The To-Taro signature ice cream had a similar effect, with a slightly nutty flavor. It had a delightful chunky feel and the cereal on top added a crunchy element to the palette. Overall, the tastes of all the ice creams blended together very nicely, providing for a unique and interesting treat.

The milk tea based ice cream didn’t quite have the same stunning look that the Want S’mores did. It was more sloppily placed and looked bland in comparison. However, the flavors still went together really well. The milk tea flavor tasted exactly like boba, giving it a more Asian twist. The ice cream was creamy, with a slight crunchiness from the extreme cold. The star of the ice cream was truly the milk tea base though, as the toppings didn’t add much to the flavorful base, and I couldn’t even taste the oreo mix-in.

Altogether, I-CE-NY came together as a great experience rather than just eating ice cream with some friends. Being able to watch the unique process that the employees go through to make the ice cream was a cool element in itself. Rolled ice cream is an eccentric treat, and eating it was completely different from regular ice cream. It still tastes like ice cream, but the look is transformed. The portions were large and it was a bit heavy. The price was also a bit on the higher side, but I felt like it was worth it, considering the delicious ice cream I got out of it. The franchise did a great job of bringing together the two important components of eating: the flavors, and the experience. With their kind service and cool-looking, delicious ice cream, I-CE-NY really shines and is a great place to visit for a treat when at the mall.

Overall Rating: four out of five stars

I-CE-NY Lakeline

11200 Lakeline Mall Drive | Cedar Park, Texas

Hours

Monday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Sunday 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.

http://icenyicecream.com/