The heat is scorching, but not along Magiting St., Teacher’s Village East, Quezon City. There, teenagers cool down, the groovy way!
The Iscreamist is not your regular ice cream stall. It is owned by Oliver Timonera, who, after his culinary studies, had one goal in mind—to share the excitement and the unique experience of having liquid nitrogen ice cream with as many people as possible.
Inspired by molecular gastronomy virtuoso chef Marcel Vigneron, Timonera worked with liquid nitrogen. Using it, he says, allows him to create the freshest ice cream. It is whipped up only upon a customer’s order, mixed before your eyes, over a cloud of smoke and, voilà, in just eight minutes, a scoop is served.
Before he became an “icecreamist” (a title he aspires to be known as; he says the term simply means someone who loves ice cream), Timonera worked for hotels and restaurants as a sous chef. But he yearned to open something of his own, so he opened the Iscreamist a year ago.
His menu has undergone changes, mostly to cater to a student clientele.
In the beginning, he served Baby Back Ribs Sous-Vide with Liquid Nitrogen Coleslaw and even offered helium shots—that is, chocolate lollipop with pop rocks served with helium balloon. The customers blowing the balloon would then start singing—instant happiness. But, unfortunately, the two novel offerings didn’t sell as much.
I notice how the painfully shy Timonera gets a kick out of seeing people enjoy his kitchen experiments.
The prominently displayed menu board is patterned after the table of elements. Among the offerings is Dragon’s Breath—bite-size snacks such as macarons, burger cookies and s’mores that you dip in liquid nitrogen. True to its name, once the snack touches your mouth, you begin to blow thick white smoke, just as a dragon would!
The liquid nitrogen ice cream, made from either Coffee Base, Sweet Cream Base or Adult Cream Base, has alcohol added to the mix.
Among the unusual flavors are bacon leche flan, mocha cardamom, pumpkin pie, banana cream pie and toasted marshmallow. The flavors came about after a trial-and-error process. According to Timonera, his ice cream concoctions are classics with a modern twist.
When I ask why his flavors run out of stock, he says it’s because he has to make them all himself. He never thought he would be this tired. Sometimes, he and his kitchen help prepare for
up to 200 servings and they still run out.
I saw people waiting in line, or coming and going the time we were there. I also realized how preparing the ice cream takes time and how small the place really is (12-15 guests max). But I also noticed that the few, who had been privileged enough to get seats, took their time to enjoy every “smoking” minute as they kept ordering for more.
Timonera hopes to raise the nitrogen experience a notch—nothing really fancy, but something that will give his clients even greater delight.
He would also like to remind everyone to enjoy his creations such as Dragon’s Breath with caution. Liquid nitrogen is very cold and can cause burns. Do not spill it on yourself or on others. You must also let it drip and boil over before you eat it. Children must be supervised by parents or adults when enjoying the liquid nitrogen ice cream experience.
The Iscreamist is at 46 D Magiting St., Teachers Village East, Diliman, Quezon City. (Thanks to Ana and Kelly for this discovery.)
From cold to hot…very, very hot! Here’s one of my recent best finds.
Many times we find ourselves staring at the stove, hoping and wishing that our stockpot would come to a boil. The more in a hurry we are, the longer it seems to take.
I have found the perfect solution—the G-Wok. It’s a fantastic alternative to my old high-pressure burner that consumes so much gas.
G-Wok is La Germania’s heavy-duty commercial burner designed for small food establishments such as cafeterias, street food stalls, small restaurant and busy home kitchens. It is a fast-cooking portable gas stove with twin jet systems.
The stove is well-designed, compact, easy to use and clean. It’s also very reasonably priced—for about P2,600, how could you go wrong?
For details, call 5641521 to 28.
In last week’s column, L’Artizan should have been spelled with an “S”—L’Artisan.