A Few New Flavours

Four Flavours We’re always tinkering with new flavours here, and above are four that the production team recently sent into the shops. (I apologise about the quality of the photo – it’s such a let-down to return to my old camera after the incident with the Leica).

During this busy time, I’ve been in the Dingle shop almost constantly rather than tinkering with the ice cream, which is really what I like to do best. However, JP, Neil and Christophe have been more than able to come up with some interesting flavours.

1. The first on the left is a carrot, celery, and orange sorbet. The celery gives it a nice fresh taste.

2. The second is slow-cooked raspberry ice cream using the fruit from Sweetbank farm. We’ve done this flavour before, but it’s been refined.

3. The third is really sublime if you like nuts – milk chocolate with almond, caramelised hazelnuts and Irish whiskey (Neil’s creation).

4. The last is the Valrhona chocolate craquantes in a vanilla base.


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RIP Leica Camera

Bulls Head In the midst of all the summer madness, we’ve had a sad development at Ice cream Ireland. My brother-in-law, visiting from Germany, accidentally threw my Leica digital camera into the sea. I am very sad, and my food photos will definitely suffer. It seems the model is sold out and it will be October until the next generation comes out. I’m back to the old Minolta until I can figure out a replacement…

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It’s an Endurance Test!

Piano bicycle We have just about survived the carnival atmosphere that is Dingle over the bank holiday weekend, serving thousands of customers. It’s still going to be very busy for the next few weeks, and then it will all be over.

It’s impossible to prepare for the height of the summer, and anyone in the ice cream business will, I’m sure, be able to relate to the mayham. Even so, running ice cream shops in August becomes a kind of endurance test that might only be compared the pre-Christmas rush in other retail businesses.

Line out door

Most of the time it’s smooth, even with the craziness, but inevitably things go wrong. The compressor on the scooping cabinet in Killarney broke, a staff member went home sick, another sprained their ankle.

That’s when you are truly tested, and yet, somehow it all seems to work out in the end. The days are long and intense, but there is also a great rush from the sheer volume of it.

When you have a queue out the door much of the time and had two record-breaking days over the weekend, it’s hard to be anything but happy, no matter how tired you are.

You close up late up night, think about all the hard work you’ve done preparing for this, think about the care that has gone into the product and the hard work of the team around you, and then you take a deep breath and open the doors again in the morning…

And there, waiting, is the another queue of customers, expectant, waiting for you to bring on the ice cream and make them happy…

Bank Holiday Madness

Cat in Boat Although my parents cat, Folly, has time to laze around on the boat, we’ve been completely manic here in the world of ice cream. The August Bank Holiday is this weekend, and the shops are packed with people. Please forgive my lack of blogging, but I’m in the thick of things trying to keep it all going!