Seven dairy-free iced treats to help you beat the heat this summer
From milkshakes made with almond milk to sesame ice cream to watermelon sorbetto, we’ve got vegans covered on the healthy ways to cool down over the scorching summer months in Hong Kong
If you count yourself among the growing numbers of people choosing plant-based diets, you don’t have to miss out on one of the best things about summer ice cream. We sampled seven vegan icy treats to beat the heat here in Hong Kong.
Tea salon Flamingo Bloom opened its third store at IFC Mall in Central this month and launched its Naked Zero milkshakes (HK$43) made with almond milk. They come in four flavours: Bronze, which is bananas with organic cacao powder, Violet, a mix of blueberries and grapes, Pink with strawberries, and Gold, with mango.
It lacks the velvety texture you might expect from a milkshake and is more of a watery smoothie. But it is still a flavourful and healthy drink that goes down a treat. Expect long lines. www.flamingo-bloom.com
The Hong Kong-based manufacturer has been producing frozen desserts without dairy products since 2013. All its hand-crafted products are vegan, gluten- and soy-free, halal and kosher certified. Available in their storefront and in supermarket freezers, Happy Cow offers the largest selection of vegan ice cream in town, including interesting flavours such as ginger, dragon berry, salted caramel swirl, cherry almond fudge and ying yang sesame (HK$38 for a single scoop and HK$78 for a triple). The creamy treats are made with coconut cream and coconut sugar, so the coconut taste can shine through. http://www.happycowhk.com
Emack & Bolio’s
The American brand known for its funky cones and generous sundaes also offers a non-dairy treat: fruit sorbet (HK$43 for small and up to HK$83 for large). Made with cane sugar, filtered water and fresh fruits, it is available in three tongue-tingling flavours – mango, raspberry and lemon. emackandboliohk.com
Another place with luscious sorbets (HK$35 for mini and up to HK$99 for extra large). Since theirs are sorbet gelato, they have a slightly more chewy texture. As the Italian company uses only fresh fruit to make its products, the available flavours depend on the season. Ones currently on offer include lemon, melon, strawberry and pear. It also has (dairy-free) chocolate-covered fruit bars, and popsicles that you can take home. www.grom.it/en
For those who prefer the creamy texture of real ice cream, check out this cafe at Lee Tung Avenue in Wan Chai, which serves artisanal coffee. It has regular gelato as well as intriguing dairy-free flavours such as butterfly peas and rose. Despite their beautiful colours, we are reassured that the products contain no artificial colourings and no additives. They also take the time to shape the ice cream into an intricate rose on top of the cone (HK$48 for one flavour and HK$78 for three). www.givres.com
The award-winning company is the first in Hong Kong to make ice cream with liquid nitrogen, creating ice cream that is unbelievably smooth and rich in flavour. Among the four kinds available this summer, only one is vegan – Sicilian pistachios (HK$50).
Served with some crunchy bits on top, it is dense and nutty. It is not scooped out of a jar, but made on-the-spot, so it does take a bit of time. However, it is certainly worth the wait. www.labmade.com.hk
Its three shops offer scooped sorbetto, freshmade daily, including Lime Mint, Watermelon, Mango Paradiso, Limone Fresco, Coconut Cool and Strawberry Smile (HK$39 for a single scoop and HK$59 for a triple). You can also find its natural fruit ice pops (HK$25) – in lemon, mango, pineapple and raspberry – at local supermarkets. xtc.com.hk