Wong's Ice Cream
Wong’s Ice Cream is a one-man operation creating delicious Asian ice cream. You might find yourself ordering a cone of owner Ed Wong’s signature variety, black sesame and salted duck egg, or wasabi honey, Vietnamese coffee, or chocolate yuzu.
Surprisingly, it’s not just ice cream. Wong also sells snack and grocery items from Neal Brothers, Kozlik’s and Harmony and he’s teamed up with Tito Ron’s, giving them a new place to sell their addictive Filipino pies.
The space is bare bones but has just enough room for what they need, with a few scant stools and a simple ledge at the front.
A fridge holds pies, milk, and pre-packed ice cream containers, and it’s easy to see an expected grocery space filling up more of the area.
Scoops run for $4.50 a single scoop and $7.50 a double, a dollar extra for a waffle cone. That brings our double scoop of ube and rosewater white chocolate jasmine to $8.50.
The rosewater is definitely the most prominent flavour, very floral and a little sweet, and the ube is rich and starchy by contrast.
Ordering a cup gets you a Chinese-restaurant-style takeout container. I try a scoop of wasabi honey and Vietnamese coffee in one of these. If you can only try one flavour, make it the wasabi, if you’re up for it. Waves of heat and honey overtake your tastebuds and then quickly subside.
Pre-packed containers run for $20, slightly larger than the serving takeout containers, in a selection of flavours, including vegan ones like coconut mango sticky rice and lemongrass lime sorbet.
Tito Ron’s ube polvoron pies are available for $24, cookie bottom cassava pies for $25.
They’re busy thinking up ways to sell pie slices on a stick with ice cream.
Grocery items carry the Asian fusion theme through with Korean barbeque and Indian spiced chips, as well as chocolate Ed loves that incorporate Asian flavours from New York chocolatier Moderne.
Along with that there are gluten-free, organic and vegan basics just to meet demand in this neighbourhood.
White Rabbit candy will likely be especially nostalgic to those with an Asian upbringing like Wong’s.
Wong started out making small batch ice cream with Henry Brown’s for a couple years in Hamilton, where he would hit up farmer’s markets. He checked out of the corporate world to make people smile all day, and his goal is to become a constructive part of the burgeoning East Chinatown neighbourhood.