Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Everyday is like sundae*

Chin Chin Labs is like no other ice cream placed you've ever visited. Forget the rows of brightly coloured icy mounds and free samples. At Chin Chin in Camden, there are only three flavours: vanilla, valrhona chocolate and a 'flavour of the week' - which on our visit was earl grey tea and victoria sponge.

So we joined the queue and waited eagerly. There is no pre-made icecream; every serving is made to order in front of you. Once the selection is made, the ice cream base is poured into the stainless steel mixer and then the liquid nitrogen is dispensed with much drama, filling the front of the store with steam. Once the nitrogen combines with the ice cream base, it's mixed for only a few seconds before it forms solid ice cream.

Each ice cream includes a free sauce (choices include raspberry and salted caramel) and topping (from popping candy, metallic sprinkles, crystal sweets and honeycomb). The ice cream is incredibly smooth and full flavoured - the earl grey/sponge was afternoon tea in a mouthful. Being the weekend, I thought this place would be full of children but as it was a 30 minute+ queue to get served, mainly the big kids were playing! I'll definitely be back for another Willy-Wonka-does-icecream experience.

* As Morrissey has been in the papers again (for all the wrong reasons, mind), it was only fitting to borrow this title.

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