BY TAN BEE HONG
ARTISANAL ice cream has totally spoiled my tastebuds and now, Crème De La Crème (CDLC) has pushed the benchmark even higher.
Located in Damansara Uptown, the café is hip and stylish, with an Instagrammable neon-lit unicorn on one wall, plain grey walls and black tables set off by white chairs and cement benches.
Heading the kitchen team is Evelyn Choong who had trained under celebrity dessert chef Christy Tania of Australian MasterChef fame.
She works closely with owner Lio Lim to create all the icy treats.
CDLC has six sorbet varieties including fruity ones (Raspberry and Mango Passion made with Alphonso mango) as well as kopitiam-inspired sorbets.
I love the refreshing Barley Lime (made by boiling pearl barley and adding freshly squeezed lime juice) and Limau Assam (calamansi juice and assam boi).
DragonFruit Strawberry Sorbet is a fruity treat rich in fibre, antioxidants and Vitamin C from the red dragonfruit and strawberries.
There are 12 flavours of ice cream. One can even start the day with ice cream as there are three breakfast-inspired ice cream: Cerealicious, Cookies & Cream and Pandan Kaya Toast.
Pandan Kaya Toast reminds me of breakfast kaya toast.
To achieve this, Choong grinds dehydrated pandan leaves into powder which she bakes into a crumble with santan and eggs.
This is swirled into ice cream to get that rich kaya aroma with an added crunch.
It now comes as ice cream. French Earl Grey Boba is a strong milk tea ice cream and with boba pearls hidden in the cone, you end with a satisfying chew after licking the ice cream.
Definitely for boba lovers.
Other ice cream choices are Chunky Monkey (banana and salted butterscotch, walnuts and dark chocolate crumble), Yin & Yang (white and black sesame) and Musang King (100% pure durian).
Two are totally recommended: Madagascar Ash and Miso Caramel.
The first is the smoothest, creamiest ice cream to ever pass my lips.
Lio assures me it’s guiltless too – a sugar-free treat that even diabetics can indulge in.
The secret’s in maltitol, a sugar substitute, combined with Madagascar vanilla pods and bamboo charcoal for detox.
The Miso Caramel trumps all salty caramels.
Using miso gives the caramel a salty edge with an umami kick.
There are seven mini ice cream cakes, all works of art handcrafted by Choong.
I feel a little pang of guilt when I cut into one.
Beauty & The Beast is a velvety rose with little dew drops on the petals.
Rose “Beauty” is 63% dark chocolate and vanilla ice cream, with Morello cherry sorbet.
The “Beast” is a base of dark chocolate crumble, chewy chocolate brownie and almond nibs.
Women will swoon over Lady Pearl, an elegant raspberry pink and white ring topped with a lace collar in white chocolate, with edible pearls and diamantes.
Inside is Strawberry and Madagascar Vanilla ice cream as well as Dragon Fruit Strawberry sorbet.
Contrasting textures come in little crumbles and red almond sponge while passionfruit crémeux kicks in with a tartness to cut through the richness.
How can one not love Bunny?
The cute meringue rabbit (available until April 21) is on its back, with paws in the air.
There are tropical flavours of coconut, mango, calamansi, pineapple, lemongrass and passionfruit.
The base is a crunchy chocolate hazelnut feuilletine base with almond sable.