Freshness under the sun | Frozen compositions to melt with envy

The scoops of ice cream are divine. But as soon as they are matched with gourmet accomplices, from the most classic to the most disconcerting, they take on another dimension. Is there life beyond banana split ? Oh yes, because the creameries here offer all sorts of variations on the theme of frozen composition, with original creations or with a taste from elsewhere. Here are our summer discoveries.

Posted at 11:00 a.m.

Valerie Simard

Valerie Simard
The Press

Sylvain Sarrazin

Sylvain Sarrazin
The Press

Blueboy: visual and taste fireworks

Ordering a mixed bowl at Blueboy, a friendly ice cream parlor on avenue du Mont-Royal, is like setting off a fireworks display. On a base of pineapple, melon or watermelon are grafted two sorbets and an ice cream (all homemade) as well as a deluge of garnishes, such as skewers of fruits and assorted candies, edible flowers (in season) and other surprise treats. The watermelon-based composition is also inspired by the country of origin of the Salvadoran owner.

“We were inspired by the sandía loca [la pastèque folle], a fruit and spice preparation popular in El Salvador and elsewhere in Latin America, such as Mexico,” explain Sandra Valera and Thomas Burthe-Mique, at the helm of the establishment. The added toppings are selected to resonate with the choice of base fruit and the flavors offered (they change regularly: vanilla, chocolate, mango, piña colada, taro, etc.).

We tested the watermelon with the flavors of the moment — Tiger’s Blood (strawberry, watermelon and coconut), mojito and taro/dulce de leche swirl — with a result that was as spectacular visually as it was in taste, thanks to the particularly tasty sorbets. Count two or three eaters to overcome it: it’s a sugar monster!

Iconoglace: Iconic Mont-Royal

Photo Catherine Lefebvre, special collaboration

Mont-Royal is a recent addition to the sundae offering at Iconoglace, a young creamery that is already an institution in the La Petite-Patrie district. Its price: $7.75 (regular version) and $8.25 (vegan version).

The popularity of Iconoglace sundaes matches that of the La Petite-Patrie establishment in Montreal. Faced with demand, owner Anabelle Bernaki has doubled her offer, bringing the number of sundaes listed on the slate to four, including the new Mont-Royal (topped with a small chocolate cross!), which she has -even imagined in honor of the metropolis.

Those who love pig sundaes (and there are many of them, according to her) will enjoy this composition which includes Coaticook vanilla soft serve ice cream, three layers of hot topping (fudge, caramel and peanut butter coulis), interspersed with a layer of homemade chocolate chip and pecan cookies. The mount is drizzled with homemade peanut, pecan and pretzel crumble and topped with a piece of cookie.

The sundae is also available in a vegan version, with the delicious homemade soft ice cream from Iconoglace. The marriage between the vanilla ice cream and the peanut butter coulis, which is very creamy, is a revelation. But unless you have a high sugar tolerance, you’ll definitely want to share.

Bouza: Elastic Syria

Photo François Roy, La Presse

“Elastic” ice cream with Middle Eastern flavors (achta and rose water), finely prepared cotton candy and pistachio chips: this little condensed version prepared by a Syrian creamery in Laval will transport you on an oriental magic carpet. Its price: approximately $9.20.

Do you want to venture on the paths of new textures and Middle Eastern perfumes? Bouza has what you need. In this Syrian creamery founded in 2018 by two brothers, bouza is made by hand in the traditional way, that is to say an ice cream to which specific ingredients (salep and mastic) are added, giving it a consistency elastic and rubbery.

The Laval boutique offers, among other things, a tray filled with two scoops of your choice on a bed of cotton candy, all garnished with crushed pistachios. We opted for achta flavors (based on fresh cream and delicately flavored with orange blossom) and rose water, two great classics of gastronomy from this region of the world. The mouthfeel is amazing, yet silky, like melting chewing gum. The cotton candy is very delicately produced, with finesse and crunch. A rotating range of flavors, more classic, are offered (banana, Oreo, almonds, etc.).

The only small downside: the area around the creamery, at the crossroads of two really unsightly Laval boulevards. A quick trip to the Parc de la Fabrique-Saint-Martin to taste your discovery will be beneficial.

Waffles and ice cream: everything is in the sign

Photo Sarah Mongeau-Birkett, La Presse

A waffle, vanilla ice cream, chocolate coulis, cookie dough, icing sugar, pieces of cookie and extra strawberries: it’s quite heavy, rather classic, but you can take it well in case of unexpected cravings. Its price (with an extra $1): $12.65.

Yes, it’s a deluge of sugar and calories. But filling a waffle with ice cream, coating it with chocolate and sprinkling it with toppings is a little deviation that we can allow ourselves from time to time. The choice is made among 12 compositions (brownie-caramel, chocolate-strawberry, Nutella-banana, Cookie Monster, etc.), each with its own Belgian chocolate coulis and its assortments. The waffle, which holds it all together, is baked on site, ensuring freshness and suppleness.

The ice cream (we opted for Cookie Monster, with extra strawberries) is very classic, but had a good taste of fresh milk – a vegan option, not offered during our visit, is normally offered. For those who like the excess of sugar, you can draw from a dozen toppings to compose your naughty pyramid. Classic and hearty, not to be devoured shortly before dinner… A little extra: the franchise has several branches in Montreal and Laval.

Botocoin: African delight

Photo Martin Tremblay, La Presse

Botocoin is offered in classic or supreme versions. Here, six cinnamon donuts sit alongside soft-serve vanilla ice cream, topped with a strawberry and peanut coulis. Its price: $10.35 (prices vary depending on the options chosen).

Called botokoin in Togo, mikaté in Congo or even puff-puff in Nigeria and Sierra Leone, these little round donuts fried in oil are the star of the aptly named Botocoin, in the east end of Montreal. Opened last year, this small shop located on the ground floor, a few steps from the Botanical Garden, combines this traditional African dessert with a traditional dessert from here: soft or hard ice cream.

Of Togolese origin, Emmanuelle, Marie and Victor Ahyi-Sera as well as their mother Lydia Quemun wanted to find premises for their catering service. They were charmed by it, but its rental came with the sale of the dairy business that occupied it. “We thought it was a great challenge! said Marie Ahyi-Sera. We wanted to wink at Quebec and Togo and a mix of culinary cultures. »

The donuts are entirely handmade, using an art technique that the mother taught her three children. “We inherited the recipe from our grandmother who sold botokoins at the market in Togo,” says Marie. Here, we deviate a little from tradition by adding icing sugar, cinnamon, fleur de sel caramel or a chocolate-hazelnut spread to the donuts.

In groups of 6, 12 or 24 (for large families!), they are served hot, in contrast to the ice cream, which makes this dish so popular. This union can be embellished with a coulis of fruit or chocolate, peanuts, pieces of known chocolate bars or cookies. We opted for simplicity with cinnamon donuts, soft-serve vanilla ice cream topped with a strawberry coulis and sprinkled with peanuts. A successful intercultural marriage to which we wish long life.

Juliette & Chocolat: gourmet classic

Photo Catherine Lefebvre, special collaboration

Miss Fraise is part of the variety of sundaes offered at Juliette & Chocolat. Its price: $13.79 for the one above, which can fill two people. The smaller size sells for $6.99.

For a more classic but gourmet sundae, head to one of the branches of Juliette & Chocolat, a high place of pilgrimage for sugar lovers in the metropolitan area. Since last year, the restaurant, famous for its brownies and hot chocolates, has welcomed the Frisson family: a selection of layered sundaes made up of Soeurette Noisette, Miss Fraise, Papa Banana, Mamie Biscuit and Papi Brownie. Offered in two formats, they all consist of vanilla ice cream, a coulis or a spread and a touch of crunch. Everything is topped with a whipped cream cap.

We tasted Miss Strawberry, reminiscent of shortcake with its layers of fresh strawberries (many), vanilla ice cream, raspberry coulis, crunchy graham cracker crumble and whipped cream. The ice cream is not exceptional, but the whole is very refreshing.

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