Saturday, June 27, 2009

Summer = Shave Ice

My sister declared on Facebook last night that this is officially the summer of ice cream and shave ice (I find the now-ubiquitous practice of referring to facebook and twitter and other web stuff a little weird, but at least I'm not quoting entire twitter conversations). Fine by me. Then Alon asked her if there is good shave ice in LA. Such a good question, I thought I'd answer it here.

Shave It: This is the answer that Torreh would give. It's a bright, heavily surfery-themed spot, with super-fluffy ice and neon 'flavas' brought in from Hawaii. Next time I'm there, I'm gonna try the Yard Sale: Pineapple, Lemon, and Guava shave ice with macadamia nut ice cream. And with every shave ice sold, a portion goes to Foster A Miracle, a foundation that inspires the future of foster children. You know I like that. There are three Shave-It locations, in Thousand Oaks, Norwalk, and Valencia. Too far for you? Start a franchise.

Half and Half Tea House: I fell in love with this place during 11 in 11 last year. A cozy Alhambra boba spot elevated with thoughtful add-ons (like caramel drizzled down the inside of a glass of boba), funky glassware and a friendly, youthful vibe. The Taiwanese-style shave ice, flavored with brown sugar and served in a giant mound, comes with your choice of toppings, including sweetened condensed milk, honey boba, egg custard, coffee jello, pineapple, red bean, mochi, or ice cream. While you're there, better get a caramel brick toast!

Sidewalk Shaved Ice at Milk: Yesterday's Tasting Table featured a summer special at Milk on Beverly: Every Saturday and Sunday through August, a guy (or girl, whatev) will be outside the shop, shaving ice to order from a giant block, raspado style, and topping it with syrups made from fresh fruit and natural ingredients. Strawberry and mojito sound nice, but I've got to try it with mango and chile-tamarind syrup. Totally going there today. Alonners, wanna come?

[thanks to RJ Malfalfa (who totally has the best name ever) for the photo!]


  1. I heard about the MILK shave ice. And this article says they'll be opening a second location in the Malibu Lumber Yard. Though that'll be too late for this summer. And next!

    An option that currently exists on the westside is Di Dio's on Montana. It's italian ice which is different than shave, but also a tasty summer treat. Some compare it to Rita's Water Ice of Philadelphia fame, but that usually makes native brotherly-lovers fly into a rage.

  2. alonner (and everyone else), check out this one: Nola Ice in Sherman Oaks serves traditional New Orleans sno-balls. Intriguing...

  3. had this when i was in tokyo.. very light and fluffy!

  4. weird! i feel like the novelty of flavorless snow would wear off fast (or maybe this angelena just doesn't get it). was it any good?

  5. I agree with Tannaz. Pour some maple syrup on that shit and we'll talk.

  6. Used to eat snow when I was a kid. It's all about the crunch/melt thing.

    Admit that I preferred snow cream (had the added spritz of vanilla/evaporated milk).

    Watch out where the huskies go...etc.

  7. I wish I'd seen this way earlier. Try all the Taiwanese shaved ice joints. We still prefer Old Country Cafe's Mango shaved ice: Free shaved ice refill and some of the finest powders in LA. Ice machine is imported from Taiwan. There are mangoes, pudding, AND condensed milk! And it's cheap! (about $4)

  8. tony, i *knew* as i was writing this that you would school me on all the wonderful places i'm missing out on in far-off lands like alhambra and rosemead. you never fail to disappoint. i want to eat that photo. the ice looks perfect.