Hello and Happy National Ice Cream Day!

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream….

Today, July 15 is one very sweet and special day because today we celebrate our favorite sweet treat; ice cream! In honor of this delicious holiday, I am sharing with all of my dear Hello Kitty Foodies some special sweet spots where you can get some awesome sweet treats!

1.) Godiva – Aside from their amazing chocolates, Godiva also has soft serve ice cream! I love their white chocolate soft serve ice cream. Served on the raspberry and rose cone, this is definitely one beautiful and delicious treat!

2.)  Wanderlust Creamery – One of my favorite things about Wanderlust Creamery is how they offer unique flavors from around the world! From Filipino ube to Japanese black sesame; it’s like you are going on an ice cream journey around the world when you eat here.

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3.)  -8C Ice Cream  – Located in Gardena’s Pacific Square Plaza is this wonderful ice cream shop specializing in rolled ice cream. My favorite is the “Peanut Butter Jealous.” I topped this with some of my favorite toppings of mango, graham crackers and oreos.

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4.) Scoops – At Far East Plaza, right across from hot spot Howlin’s Rays is a sweet spot called Scoops! This ice cream shop boosts unique flavors like lavender goat cheese, Guinness tiramisu and hazelnut passion fruit and Bianca bread. The Bianca bread is definitely one of my favorites.

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5.) Mashti Malone’s – When in Hollywood, one definitely needs to check out Mashti Malone’s. They specialize in exotic flavors from Iran. Their creamy Alfonso mango ice cream is a must for any hot day!

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6.) Melt Gelato  – In the South Bay, Melt Gelato is the place to go for crepes and gelato. Located at El Segundo at Plaza El Segundo, they’ve got both sorbets and gelato. Who doesn’t love the Italian sweet treat? My gelato of choice is their coconut macadamia ice cream.

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7.) Smitten Ice Cream  – Who wouldn’t be smitten with Smitten? Their churned to order nitrogen ice cream is smooth, tasty and simply perfect.

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8.) Bruster’s – With their handcrafted ice cream piled on a gigantic waffle cone; one can’t help but smile when getting a treat from this newly opened shop in Torrance! Cookie craze, cherry vanilla and black raspberry chocolate ice cream is calling my name.

9.) Pressed Juicery – A healthy frozen treat? Yes, please! Pressed Juicery brings healthy and happy with their Freeze! It puts a new spin on our favorite treat via this soft serve made out of cold pressed juices!

10.) Yogurtland – Our favorite Fro-yo place is now also serving ice cream! There’s classical flavors like vanilla and chocolate along with fun flavors like butter pecan and chocolate malt ball ice cream. (It’s also buy one, get one free today from 1-6pm. 😉)

11.) Afters Ice Cream – I fell in love with Afters during the Hello Kitty ❤️ Afters collaboration. Their awesome flavors include Cookie Monster and Cookie Butter!

12.) Kansha Creamery – Kansha means grateful in Japanese and I’m so grateful for this Japanese ice cream shop in Torrance. Their Mr. Universal with caramel and oatmeal cookies is the best!  Aside from scoops of ice cream, they also offers parfaits. The matcha parfait seems to be a favorite of many. It consists of vanilla ice cream, matcha jelly, matcha syrup, mochi, corn flakes, red bean paste, whipped cream and matcha ice cream.

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13.) Hisaya Kyoto Roasted Chestnuts – This chestnut shop in Torrance is chestnut galore with their offerings of chestnuts, chestnut coffee, chestnut tiramisu and chestnut ice cream! Their Mt. Fuji sundae is packed with delicious ice cream! Ice cream choices include matcha, chocolate, strawberry and chestnut flavor. 😉 This sundae is a 9oz ice cream that is perfect for National Ice Cream Day!

14.) Kream Kong Ice Cream – Seen at the OC Market, Kream Kong Ice Cream will soon be hitting up the streets via a new ice cream truck! Their offerings are handcrafted, organic and made from locally sourced ingredients. Their delicious flavors include peanut butter and jelly, ube, red velvet, avocado and banana cream pie.   Kream Kong Ice Cream  Truck will be launching this summer.

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream…

I’m sure we are all now screaming for ice cream on National Ice Cream Day! All of the place above are some places that are sure to make you smile (and scream for) their ice cream. I hope every one enjoys a scoop or two 😉 today! Happy National Ice Cream Day!

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Hello Yelp Elite Event: Cocktails & Cars Casino Royale Style!

So fancy! Busted out the cocktail dress, dancing shoes for one special night last night at the Automobile Driving Museum in El Segundo. It was the Cocktails and Cars Casino Royale Style Yelp Elite Event to kick off spring!

With the amazing drop box of this premier museum showcasing cherished old automobiles, all of us Yelp elites were in for one amazing treat. The night was full of entertainment and good times. Todd Elliot Entertainment brought a magician for some magic and amazement. The Swing Dames brought us back to the 40s’ with their lovely voices and LA Pix DJs had us all dancin’ the night away.

It was also foodie galore with some fabulous food booths. Feelin’ fancy and feelin’ full after all the delicious treats!

From Pink’s Hot Dogs, I got to enjoy a turkey dog with chili and cheese. Hearty, meaty and simply classic just like the classic cars we were surround with. It was perfect with Essentia Water

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Wanu Water put a little more fun in the night with their black cherry and peach passion water. 10 essential nutrients and 10 calories per serving!

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Tacos Primo gave us the VIP treatment with fresh made carne asada beef and  al pastor pork.

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These tacos were the perfect match with Siete tortilla chips.

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New York Food Company booth brought out soft and savory kimchi pork buns and cucumber shots.

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The fancy night continued with some fabulous drinks.

I was introduced to Tentera Coffee Roasters and instantly became a fan because of their good cause. Tentera means ‘good causes’. 2% of all Tentera coffee sales are currently donated to their partners which include the New York-based Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and 1% For The Planet. I loved their pour over coffee and how I instantly had a fresh brewed medium roast.

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More fun drinks were to be found at Happy Lemon. Salted cheese drinks are their most popular offering and I was so happy to see that along with their Sunmerry Bakery rainbow roll cake.

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The rainbow roll cake from Happy Lemon was just the start of the delightful desserts that evening because there were not one but two places to get ice cream!

Smitten Ice Cream brought out some of their best flavored nitrogen ice cream flavors such as earl grey, cookie dough with pretzels and chocolate chips, strawberry buttermilk. They even had their chocolate vegan pops! I chose to get my all time uh-mazing favorite the cookie dough with pretzels and chocolate chips. I drizzled some brown sugar caramel over the ice cream and was in sweet heaven!

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Not to be outdone was Wanderlust Creamery. I felt like as I was in an around the world trip as I had Ube Malted Crunch flavor inspired by the Philippines, Sticky Rice Mango inspired by Thailand and Japanese Neopolitan inspired by Japan. The Ube Malted Crunch had malted milk and real sweet purple jam. The Sticky Rice mango had house made real milk coconut cream and swirls of alphonso mango puree. The Japanese Neopolitan had a trio of Japanese classics; match, hojica and black sesame.

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Cookie Zombie  incorporated our favorite kid snacks into their cookies! That night they had Snack Time cookies that had King size Twix, salty pretzels and Heath Bar bits, Circus animal cookies with Circus Animal bits; and Cookies and Cream can lies with Crushed Oreo cookies & Ghirardelli white chocolate chips. Their Cookies and Cream cookies were the winner of Best Homemade Cookie at Cookie Con LA!

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Cheesecake de Granger had cheesecake cupcakes. They had lemon, Welch’s grape and peanut butter and jelly cheesecake cupcakes!

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From entertainment to food; The Automobile Driving Museum was one happening place that evening. Surrounded with 130 plus vintage, antique and muscle cars; it was one classic evening. I could not have asked for a better way to kick off spring!

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For more smiles, please see my Yelp Review  on Cocktails and Cars Casino Royale Style Yelp Elite event.

Hello The Grail Churros & Ice Cream.

“Not all who wander are lost.”

Wanderlust is defined by the strong desire to wander and for this Hello Kitty Foodie, I often find myself wandering to the hottest and sweetest spots in town. Such was the case when I found myself “wandering” to The Grail Churros and Ice Cream shop in Redondo Beach.

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The Grail Churros and Ice Cream is a new sweet shop that recently opened up in Riviera Village in Redondo Beach. Specializing in churros and ice cream, it is truly a gem of a place. The fact that their name is “The Grail” is perfect; as it symbolizes the prize at the end of wandering.

Each of their offerings here is indeed a prize. One has the option to choose between a sixteen inch churro stick with dust, glaze and toppings, a cup/cone of ice cream or even a combination of churro and ice cream via their Sahara tent; ice cream plus churro or their sandstorm; churro ice cream sandwich. They also have signature churros via their matcha churro, campfire churro, magic wand churro or the churro con cafe. The campfire churro is similar to a s’more; with the churro dusted with honey graham crackers, glazed with melted marshmallow and drizzled with hot fudge and mini marshmallows. The magic wand is indeed magical as it glazed with purple cosmic dust and is sprinkled with colorful stars.

The ice cream choices here are equally as fascinating as their churro. They’ve got yummy classics like cookie dough and butter pecan as well as exotic flavor like Ube (purple yam) and Langka (jackfruit). Perhaps one may be surprised with the Filipino flair in their ice cream. The Pinoy touch is no coincidence as The Grail is partly owned by the half Filipino Sakr brothers. The Sakr brothers are also the brains behind another South Bay favorite;  Torrance Civil Clothing.

If choosing between churro and ice cream is hard; the Sahara tent or sandstorm are perfect choices. The Sahara tent is one sixteen inch churro with one scoop of ice cream while the sandstorm is a churro ice cream sandwich with one scoop of ice cream, choice of dust and one topping. Dust options are matcha, signature cinnamon, spanish espresso or cosmic; a lovely purple dust topping. Toppings include honey graham crackers, sprinkles, m&ms, captain crunch cereal and more delights.

Upon my trip here, I chose to get a sandstorm dusted with cosmo dust, paired with langka ice cream and topped with Captain Crunch cereal. Sugarlust indeed.

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Not all who wander are lost…for sometimes it leads you to a sweet prize.

For more smiles, please see my Yelp review on The Grail Churros and Ice Cream.

 

Hello Churroholic!

First cupcakes and then pie….now the latest food trend to be making its mark is churros!

The fried-dough pastry snack originating from  Spain and Portugal is definitely taking the foodie world by storm. These delicious fritters can be found from Costco to Disneyland. It’s not just at your local store or amusement park however because now there are specialty shops specifically specializing in the sweet treat! One of these places is Churroholic.

Churroholic is a cafe offering handcrafted churros, coffee and ice cream. They are the sister shop of popular boba shop, Hiccups and can be found next to several Hiccups locations. They have locations currently in Anaheim, Paramount and Carson, California and future branches will be opening in Whittier, South Gate and Santa Ana, California.

I recently had the (sweet) pleasure of visiting their Carson branch; the newest of all their locations. This place is definitely churro heaven. Their churro menu consists of flavors of original or glazed with chocolate almonds, chocolate sprinkle, coconut chocolate, matcha pebbles, and cookies and cream. Churros can be purchased solo or with ice cream. They also offer churro sandwiches and sundaes. As they mention on their website, dessert is definitely their passion! At Churroholic they really work to offer the freshest churro you will find in town and I noticed first hand them making fresh batches.

My handcrafted choice was the Cookie Monster ice cream and a matcha pebbles churro.

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The cutest churro with ice cream ever was served. Not only was it pleasing to the eye, it was pleasing to the palete as well.  The freshly made churro was perfectly warm and crisp. The fruity pebbles were a nice sweet touch. The ice cream was sweet and milky smooth. Hmm not only did I become a Churroholic that day but a Cookie (ice cream) Monster too.

Like many of the food trends in the past years; churros are sure to become a favorite for many. It certainly is a new dessert favorite of mine and I for one have a churro crush.

For more smiles, please see my Yelp review on Churroholic.  

Hello Mo-Mo Paradise Torrance!

Paradise, as defined by Merriam-Webster is a place or state of bliss, felicity, or delight.

What if I were to tell you that paradise is now in Torrance, California? Perhaps this may sound strange to some but it is true that there is now paradise in Torrance via Mo-Mo-Paradise.

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Mo-Mo-Paradise was first established in 1993 in Kabukicho, Japan and now has over 68 restaurants worldwide. They have locations in Japan, Taiwan, China, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Indonesia and the US. The newly opened Torrance location is the second location in the US, with the first being in the US.

The restaurant specializes in Japanese hotpot with a modern twist. Customers have the choice of picking between four different soup bases: Shabu-Shabu, Sukiyaki, Tonkatsu, and Kimchi.

  • Shabu Shabu which essentially means “Swish Swish” is a Mo-Mo-Paradise USA original soup base with umami from kombu, celery, onion, carrot, shitake, and other vegetables.
  • Sukiyaki is a sweet and savory soup base that is  be made using select ingredients from Japan. Mo-mo-Paradise’s sukiyaki base is imported directly from their central kitchen in Japan and is combined with a kombu broth. The sukiyaki comes with a pasturized egg that is used for a dipping sauce for the meat.
  • Tonkatsu is a soup base made with pork bone, roasted vegetables, and kombu and it is topped with Mo-Mo-Paradise’s original fried onion and garlic chili oil.
  • Kimchi is a mildly spicy soup made with pork, miso, vegetables, chili, and kombu broth topped with sautéed and fresh kimchi.

From the soup bases, customers can then add udon, ramen, pho noodles, meatballs and a variety of different vegetables from the restaurant’s Farmer’s Market. One of the funnest parts is watching the soup cook right at the table.

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Not only are there unlimited noodles, meatballs and vegetables, there is even “Mo-re” to this restaurant via their unlimited beverages at their Drink Garden. One can get Stubborn Soda, Peach Orchard Jasmine Tea, Matcha Tea and  Milk Tea along with boba, red bean and , coffee jelly, lychee jelly.

Aside from the sweet beverages, restaurant go-ers are also can enjoy savory beef curry! This compliments the hot pot very well and one is sure to be in bliss for sure.

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It is savory delights that brings this restaurant’s name to reality but the happiness doesn’t end with the hot pot. At the end of the meal, Mo-Mo-Paradise also offers unlimited ice cream. Diners can choose from black cherry, vanilla and chocolate malted crunch! From savory to sweet, one is sure to be in a state of felicity.

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 I first started off this blog post with the definition of paradise. The newly opened Mo-Mo-Paradise with its savory hot pots along with it’s unlimited curry, vegetables, noodles and sweet ice cream; can easily be a state of bliss, felicity, or delight for many foodies. This Hello Kitty Foodie was truly delighted and full of smiles.

For more smiles, please see my Yelp review on Mo-Mo-Paradise Torrance.

Hello The Original Ghirardelli Ice Cream and Chocolate Shop!

I started the day seeing the Golden Gate Bridge and wrapped up the afternoon with a Golden Gate Ghirardelli Banana Split…..

On my recent trip to San Francisco, one of the sweetest and nicest places I visited was Ghirardelli  Square and the Original Ghirardelli  Ice Cream and Chocolate Shop.

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Ghirardelli Square is located in Fisherman’s Wharf and is home to several different shops and restaurants. Out of all the restaurants however, the Original Ghirardelli Ice Cream and Chocolate Shop is my favorite.

Ghirardelli chocolate was founded in 1852 by Italian Domenico Ghirardelli It is now the US’ longest continuously operating chocolate manufacturer.

One of the best things about visiting The Original Ghirardelli Ice Cream and Chocolate Shop is you get to see and learn all about how Ghirardelli chocolate is made. Hello Kitty Foodies can view a display of the chocolate making process with the original machinery used from 1852! They still use the same traditions that Domenico Ghirardelli began over a century ago.

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Step 1 is the Cocoa Bean Roasters. At this station os where the outer shell of the cocoa bean are removed. Once removed what is left behind the inside is what they call the nib. These nibs are roasted to give that unique Ghirardelli flavor.

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Step 2 is the Chocolate mills where the heat melts the cocoa nibs into the chocolate liquor. Step 3 is the Melanger where granite rollers mix the chocolate liquor with different ingredients.

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Step 4 is the final step and it consist of conche. This where the chocolate is smoothed out to its final texture.

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I really loved seeing this process done. What I loved even more was tasting the final product! 😉

The Original Ghirardelli Ice Cream & Chocolate Shop has a several different treats for Hello Kitty Foodies. They include delicious ice cream scoops, their world-famous hot fudge sundae and various delightful shakes! Since I was in San Francisco, I chose to get their Golden Gate Banana Split! After all when in the Bay, how could I not indulge in their most famous landmark. 😉

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The Golden Gate Banana Split consists of vanilla, strawberry and Ghirardelli Chocolate ice cream on top of a banana. The terrific trio is then topped with crushed pineapple, strawberry and handmade hot fudge whipped cream, diced almonds and a cherry! What a landmark sundae indeed! It is quite a sight and a tasty one too!

Visiting The Original Ghirardelli Ice Cream and Chocolate Shop in Ghirardelli  Square was definitely one of the sweetest parts of my San Francisco visit! For any Hello Kitty Foodies visiting the Bay area, I would definitely recommend visiting for a sweet learning experience and a sweet indulgence.

 

Hello -8C Ice Cream!

How are you going to roll this Valentine’s Day? Do you want to get “Lost in Thailand” and have a little “Chocolate Love” with your “Minions Lover” or are you simply going to be “Peanut Butter Jealous.”

No matter how you roll, -8C Ice Cream in Gardena has got you covered. 😉 

Newly opened in Gardena is -8C Ice Cream! This  new ice cream shop specializes in rolled ice cream! It’s a cool new Asian dessert trend that Hello Kitty Foodies with a sweet tooth are sure to love. Popular in Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia and the Philippines, rolled ice cream just recently made it to the US.

At -8C they have a very cute menu filled with names that are perfect for this love month. 😉  Flavors include Minions Lover (banana/nutella), Strawberry Shawty (strawberry/graham cracker), Oreo Land (oreo), Peanut Butter Jealous, Chocolate Love (chocolate syrup/graham cracker), Lost in Thailand (Thai Tea), Capn Crunch, Red Match (red bean/match), Rose (rose syrup) and Key Lime Pie and (lime/graham cracker). Hmm I think I have an ice cream crush on all of those haha!

One is sure to fall in love with how rolled ice cream works. It’s a quick and fun process. You choose your ice cream flavor and then the guys working at -8C will pour a cup of liquid  ice cream base in the flavor of your choice onto a giant chilled metal pan. Upon pouring the liquid ice cream it instantly starts to freeze.

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As the liquid ice cream is freezing, the guys at -8C will then add the toppings to the top of your ice cream. The toppings and the liquid ice cream are mashed and mixed all together.

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The entire mixture then is flattened out and spread thin. The final step is slowly scraping the yummy mixture from the chilled metal pan. They are scraped in strips and then the strips are rolled. The rolls then go into your cup and tada you have ice cream rolls! At -8C you also get unlimited toppings for free. Toppings include fresh fruit, cookies and graham crackers!

How did this Hello Kitty Foodie roll at -8C? I was “Peanut Butter Jealous” with toppings of mango (my forever fruit crush), graham crackers (my crunchy infatuation) and two oreos (one for Hello Kitty and one for Dear Daniel- where are you Dear Daniel? 😉 )

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Don’t be “jealous” of my rolled ice cream! Roll on by and fall in love with this new ice cream shop in Gardena! -8C is located in Pacific Square at the same plaza as O Young’s Rock Pot and Sanrio Surprises.

Happy Valentine’s Day Hello Kitty Foodies!

For more smiles, please see my Yelp review on -8C Ice Cream.