I love ice cream. It makes me happy. It’s been hot, so when the opportunity arose this warm bank holiday weekend to cool down with some ICE ICE BABY… (yes, twice), I couldn’t resist! Das, our family friend was visiting London from the USA, so the pressure was on to impress food-wise.
I had seen some pretty pictures of ice cream from Milk Train cafe circulating recently on Instagram and so we decided to give that a try. A few minutes walk from Leicester square, milk train was tucked away on a quiet-ish street, seconds away from Strand. This simple looking cafe, produces soft serve ice cream (vanilla, matcha and hojicha (green tea) flavoured) in a wafer cone, which can then be pimped out with toppings of your choice (popcorn, cookies and mixed nuts to name a few). A traditional cone costs between £3.50 and £3.95 with the extra toppings at an additional cost. Before you ask what the big deal is.. you can choose to have these dreamy ice creams served on a CLOUD HALO of candy floss! We joined the short, fast-moving queue outside the door, and I went for the matcha ice cream topped with Oreo cookies. My sister TuttiFrutti had the vanilla ice cream topped with Oreos.
The cafe itself was quite small and extremely warm, so after receiving our ice creams, we went outside to enjoy them in the sun. Three (mandatory) selfies later, and ironically the candy floss started to melt all over our hands. In her frustration, my sister ripped the candy floss off her ice cream and threw it away. I persevered, ate the candy floss first, then tackled the ice cream which was flavoursome, creamy and overall delicious. The Oreo topping was the perfect accompaniment to the ice cream, adding a crunch to all the matcha flavoured madness. Although the concept of this ice cream is novel, my main criticism is that I was left with very sticky hands from all the candy floss and melted ice cream, so much so that I had to use the bottle of water we had to wash our hands in the street! Although I enjoyed the ice cream, I’m not sure it was worth the sticky mess which followed! The candy floss itself was on the more disappointing side, and I’m not sure what it adds to the ice cream besides the Instagram-worthy wow factor.
The next day we were wandering around London, and decided to take a trip to the Magnum Pleasure Store near Bond Street station. This is the second summer running that the Magnum pop-up store has opened in London (If you’re quick you can catch it before it closes on the 11th September). We had to queue a lot longer for this ice cream (probably for roughly a half hour to 45 minutes). The idea was to choose your basic magnum flavour (double chocolate/double caramel/double peanut butter), choose three toppings of your choice, then top your ice cream in your favourite sauce (dark chocolate, white chocolate or milk chocolate). To top it all off the mini magnum was then drizzled in a sauce of your choice. I chose to top my caramel magnum in dark chocolate with pink almonds, rose petals and pistachios, all drizzled in white chocolate. Other interesting toppings on offer included sea salt and chilli flakes, which are the perfect combo with dark chocolate if you’re feeling a bit more adventurous! The experience was fun, and all for around £6. You get to watch your dream magnum become a reality as the staff create your magnum in front of you. The end result was a bit too ‘death by chocolate’ for me.. but I enjoyed it nonetheless.
Overall I think Milk train takes the prize for novelty. It’s still relatively undiscovered which means you don’t need to wait as long for a sweet treat, it’s a novel idea for a reasonable price and isn’t as sickly as the magnum. My only advise..it’s messy, so take wet wipes!!
Magnum pleasure store
56 South Molton Street
Milk Train Cafe
44 Bedford Street