ROANOKE, Va. – Ice cream for most of us is usually scooped, not rolled.
“The whole concept of rolled ice cream started in Thailand,” said Khanh Ha, owner of Champloo Desserts.
But Ha wanted to bring something different not just to the valley, but to the Commonwealth.
“We were actually the first location in all of Virginia to have rolled ice cream," said Ha.
He ditched the idea of a food truck and opened two storefronts, but it took a lot of work to get here.
First, the freshness.
“How to make our own cream to where it’s more fitting," said Ha. "We can’t use the one that Thailand uses, because it’s not as creamy and the ingredients weren’t as good.”
Second, practicing the art of rolled ice cream.
“It took us only two weeks, but it was two weeks of non-stop practicing,” said Ha.
Ha is proof that practice makes perfect. He started up the cold griddle so that I could order their Mint Everest.
Fresh cream with a chopped york peppermint patty, pecans, chocolate syrup and whipped cream, all rolled to perfection in a process that is nothing short of satisfying to watch.
Then, came the Pink Panther and this time, I tried to make it. As you could imagine, it was a complete disaster.
By the end, the best we could say was...
“It’s edible...so there’s that.”
It was barely even that, so Ha put me in my place and whipped up the actual thing within minutes.
Side by side, the Ying and the Yang, perfection versus catastrophe.
Now, Champloo Desserts has two locations — one in Tanglewood and one on College Ave. in Salem. They’re both open seven days a week.