I heart ice cream. I really do. It’s my dessert indulgence of choice. The cravings can get so bad that on a hormonally challenged day, I can actually eat a pint of my favorite flavor for breakfast. No joke. It’s also gotten me through heartbreak, a career flop, and basically a really bad TV show. I used to keep my favorite flavor (which thankfully I cannot find on our shores) in the freezer when I lived abroad, and sometimes nothing else. We all need our comfort food, our coping mechanisms, just a lovely pick-me-up before we stride on with the rest of our lives. The Ice Cream Bar (TICB) in the Joya Towers in Rockwell is reminiscent of the old ice cream parlors I used to haunt when I was a kid. Imagine this: a whole space just dedicated to serving you ice cream, all kinds of flavors and toppings, and you could just sit down and eat to your heart’s content. Summer is the best time to go for an icy treat, but I still look for it when it is cold. Call me weird, but just because it is cold outside doesn’t mean ice cream wouldn’t soothe me on the inside.
For those who are trying to watch their weight, TICB also has a full offering of 98 percent fat-free yogurt. You can put fruity toppings (my favorite is the antioxidant mix that has blueberries, strawberries and kiwi) or, if you’re going for texture, cereal and graham crackers for some crunch. The combinations are quite varied, but on a really spoil-me kind of day, I go for the real deal: ice cream and a whole load of sin on top. What I recently discovered (to my diet’s demise) was the comfort food also served at TICB. One day, after a rather disastrous day at the mall, I decided to meet up with some of my girlfriends for a little girl power, and I thought, what better wayto get together than over dessert?
As I sat down waiting, I was handed a menu and was told that there had been new additions in the hot food area. I decided to treat myself to some pesto cheese sticks while waiting. When my friends arrived, we realized we were all hungry so we ordered some fish and chips (which were crunchy and moist at the same time, perfection) and I ordered some macho nachos as our “kwentos” to each other extended and extended. Dessert was next, and since we had already eaten up a storm, we decided to share the Loco Lava, a flourless chocolate lover’s dream come true.
Looking for a special place to celebrate the upcoming V-day? There are good things to be shared over here. There’s even a Lover’s Delight dessert, which is a heart-shaped ice cream cake with fruit toppings, very delicious. If it’s a family V-day affair (hey, all families could do with some romance), then take them there so the parents can indulge their inner kid, and, well, their kids.
It is not often that you can find (nowadays) a stand-alone restaurant that also serves good dessert. If you shy away from crowded malls, finding a place that gives you peace and brings you some very happy childhood memories makes you feel young and, well, at least for a couple of hours, totally free to be able to sit down far from the madding (mall) crowd, choose from a variety of hot pica-pica type fare (or a full meal) and still have space for whatever your sweet tooth craves after. We should all have places we can go to to unwind while the daily grind continues to, well, grind outside. In my case, it’s a place where I can read and work on my computer while savoring a good, hot meal and then later on, if I choose, a colorful sweet treat. My sacred space may be a foodie space but it serves its purpose, gives me comfort and nourishes me on many levels. Soul food comes in many forms, and is sometimes best when consumed using utensils.
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The Ice Cream Bar is located at Ground Level, Joya Tower Joya Drive (beside Power Plant Mall), Rockwell Center), Rockwell Makati, Tel no (63 2) 403-0891
(reposted from SOUL TRAIN By Katrina A. Holigores (The Philippine Star) Updated February 11, 2011 12:00 AM)