Cosmopolitan beach hang-out where Shimmy used to be
The Creamery in Cape Town
Unique handmade ice cream with a sensational swirl of honest ingredients
If you consider your name your most memorable feature, then you haven’t met the small, industrious team at The Creamery, Cape Town’s boutique ice cream parlour: they will remember you by your favourite ice cream flavour. And with original combinations like Naartjie Choc Chip, Strawberry and Basil, and Honey and Rosemary, this exclusive, ethical crafter of handmade creaminess is rather unforgettable themselves.
A heady fragrance of floral fruitiness and the sweet, summery scent of strawberries envelops my senses as I step into The Creamery’s headquarters in Mowbray one sunny spring morning. The season’s first batch of naturally-grown field berries has arrived in what founder Kate Schrire describes as, “a crimson declaration that The Creamery has survived its first year [this innovative parlour opened in November 2011]”.
The team are hard at work, large bowls of the plumpest, reddest fruit you’ve ever seen before them, their hands dyed pink from sorting and chopping. Hand-picked and delivered that morning, the fresh organic produce, which is grown where fruit trees rein free and cows have names, will soon be mixed with a homemade custard in a generous ratio of 1:1. The secret to this honest-to-goodness enterprise’s most popular flavour is to put in more strawberries than the mainstream ice cream maker would ever dare, a small step in their recipe for success.
In addition to supporting an ethical approach to farming, this unique maker of icy delights and frozen desserts believes in building personal relationships with both customers and suppliers. They’re aware that more and more South Africans are asking where their food comes from, what goes into it, and how ingredients with more numbers than letters in their names can be considered edible. Thus, The Creamery’s transparent, open-door policy invites patrons to see firsthand how their sweet treats are made, and encourages customers to get in touch with the farmers supplying the ingredients.
Owing to Kate’s professional background in the Slow Food movement (a worldwide phenomenon championing the cause of sustainable, naturally-grown produce), she is committed to helping to build a local community of emerging, small-scale farmers. Thus, now as a small business owner herself, her priority is not only profit, but rather also helping others who, in return, help her. Using only pure, fresh ingredients, as supplied by this growing community, may be more expensive and labour intensive, but it ensures that The Creamery’s flavours are always changing with the seasons, bringing new, exciting combinations of full-bodied tastes each month. As Kate says, “there is something to be said for waiting in anticipation for what you really like.”
For many, ice cream is a nostalgic treat reminiscent of long, lazy days on the beach and little sticky fingers grasping large sugar cones. But for Kate, it is the ideal platform to showcase the best our Mzansi farmlands have to offer, and to spread cheerfulness through what she describes as the “ultimate joyful product”. It can be enjoyed both on a hot summer’s day at the seaside and on a cold winter’s evening while snuggling up on the couch in pyjamas. Being a year-round enterprise, The Creamery aims to produce a product that is simply delicious in itself, with the refreshing coldness being only one component of an always sensational snack.
So, what interesting new flavours lie around the next corner? According to Kate, it’s impossible to predict. Her combinations are spontaneous and always a surprise to both her and her loyal customers. As an ice cream maker, she finds inspiration in everything: overseas trips, customers’ suggestions (the wackiest request was for a Banana and Candied Bacon combo, but at this parlour, “weird is in the eye of the beholder”), online research and just good old horsing around in the kitchen.
The classic flavours are available all year round: 65% Chocolate, Peanut Butter (boasting a deliciously chewy texture), Salted Caramel and Rosetta Roastery Coffee (smokier than your morning mug); though, customers are also often treated to the return of previous years’ bestsellers, such as Fennel, Pollen and Peach, and Granadilla Choc Chip. Capetonians can look forward to a range of possible new varieties, like Cherry and Green Tea or Asian-inspired Oolong, and can hire their very own ice cream stand, stocked with personal favourite options, for functions like birthday celebrations and office parties.
As for your favourite flavour? Why pick only one?
Tip: Get your spoons out and join The Creamery’s exclusive ice cream club to receive three pints (500ml containers) of yet-to-be-released and limited edition flavours monthly. A three-month membership costs R389p/p and a six-month membership costs R768p/p.
WHERE TO BUY THE CREAMERY’S ICE CREAM
The Creamery Headquarters in Cape Town
Corner of Wyecroft and Weymouth Roads | Mowbray | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 447 7690
- The Creamery Webshop (http://thecreamery.co.za/shop/)
- Eat Out The Box (http://www.eatoutthebox.co.za/)
- Home Heroes (http://www.homeheroes.org/)
Markets in Cape Town
- Neighbourgoods Market
Old Biscuit Mill | Lower Albert Road | Woodstock | Cape Town
- EarthFair Food Market
St Georges Mall | City Centre | Cape Town
- Starling’s Cafe Urban Farmers Market
94 Belvedere Road | Claremont | Cape Town
Retail Sites in Cape Town
- GoGo’s Deli
6 Cardiff Castle | Corner of Main Street and Kildare Road | Newlands | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 671 0573
- The Foodbarn Deli
Noordhoek Farm Village | Village Lane | Noordhoek | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 789 1966
- Moyo at Kirstenbosch
Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden | Newlands | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 762 9585
By Camilla Marsh
Beautiful balmy weather goes hand in hand with cool icy delights, so shake the sand from your shoes and head to one of these top ice cream parlours in Cape Town.
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