Ice cream and holidays go hand-in-hand – fact. But there’s more to this frozen treat than you might think. From Thailand to Italy, wherever you go there’s a different spin on the classic. From Cornwall’s traditional cones to Sicily’s ice cream-filled buns, there’s a style – and flavour – out there for everyone, and finding it’s going to be fun…
Cornish ice cream in England
The rest of England is jealous of Cornwall’s ice cream. That’s because its climate and terrain is perfectly suited to dairy farming, hence the county’s famous export: clotted cream – essential for Cornish ice cream. Antonia Shields, owner of Antonia’s Pearls holiday cottages, thinks the Coconut Bounty ice cream at Tall Ships Creamery is the second best in Cornwall (after her grandmother’s iced lemon posset). Stay at one of her cottages, or go for grandeur at Tregenna Castle Resort, set in 72 acres of grounds near St Ives.
Ice cream rolls in Bangkok, Thailand
Find the world’s coolest stir fry at Chatuchak Weekend Market or on stalls in the Saphan Lueng district, with liquid cream flash-frozen on a -35°C pan and rolled to order. Fillings are mashed in, from exotic fruits to Oreo cookies. Afterwards, chill out in the Yor Yak Hostel, where complimentary breakfast comes in Thai-style picnic boxes. Or take the plunge at COMO Metropolitan Bangkok, a sleek, chic, city oasis with a huge outdoor pool.
Ice cream brioche in Palermo, Sicily
The snows of Mount Etna once used to freeze Sicily’s gelato. Now having freezers in homes means brioche stuffed with ice cream is a staple summer snack. Stefania Crimaldi, of boutique design hotel Palco Rooms&Suites, recommends Brioscia: ‘The portion sizes are so generous, it’s almost like a meal. The best flavours are pistachio and Mandorla [a bitter almond liqueur]. Always say yes to a drizzle of melted chocolate on top.’
Mochi ice cream in Tokyo, Japan
Bite into the ball of soft, sticky pounded rice and find a cool, creamy centre – this is mochi ice cream, a fusion of East and West in a dessert. Invented by American-Japanese Frances Hashimoto, owner of a four-generation family patisserie in Little Tokyo, Los Angeles, it became an instant hit in Japan. Buy flavours including sweet sake and black sesame at speciality shops Mochicream, or pick them up in any convenience store. Eat them in bed at the Park Hyatt Tokyo for the full Lost in Translation experience, or go traditional at the Ryokan & Spa Shizuku, with its wooden soaking tubs and walled gardens.
Kulfi in Delhi, India
According to Rishabh Anand, pastry chef at The Leela Palace New Delhi, the best place in the city for India’s favourite dessert is Kuremal Mohanlal Kulfi Wale, at 526 Kucha Pati Ram in Chandni Chowk market. ‘They have the most innovative flavours, including Custard Apple and Blackberry Sharbat,’ he says. Spoil yourself in The Leela’s sumptuous surroundings – think travertine marble and 14,000 flowers delivered daily – or relish traditional details at restored house Haveli Dharampura.