When it’s hot outside, consuming anything frozen makes the temperature seem a few degrees cooler.
In recent years, the Thai rolled ice cream craze has taken Louisiana by storm. The hype doesn’t solely surround the ice cream; it’s the experience — watching workers flatten the ingredients into a thin strip and carefully roll it into a seemingly infinite number of flavors.
New Orleanians also are loyal to snowballs, that shaved-ice treat that comes in as many flavors as one can imagine. By now, we’re well-acquainted with the classic snowball flavors.
We’ve been refreshed on the hottest of summer days by scarfing down a strawberry or have satisfied a sweet tooth with a wedding cake. Even so, flavors like “Beam Me Up Scottie” and “Joker” nestled into menus at snowball stands around New Orleans naturally pique our interest.
We have assembled five spots to try out rolled ice cream as well as six unique snowball flavors to try when you’re in the mood to explore uncharted territory.
Rolled ice cream
Sweet Rolls (2033 Highway 190, Covington, (985) 234-9776; 3131 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Suite 104, Metairie, 504-766-9258; www.mysweetrolls.com)
With locations across Louisiana and the Gulf South, Sweet Rolls has been a key player in pioneering Louisiana’s rolled ice cream trend. A year ago, you’d have to wait in line for an hour to try their rolls, topped with generous helpings of cake, cookies, brownies or other add-ons — depending on your choice of flavor. The New Orleans-inspired Gentilly Roll features berry Chantilly cake and whipped cream atop blueberry- and strawberry-infused ice cream rolls.
Freezy Street (617 N. Broad St., 678-914-3788; 2424 Williams Blvd., Suite R, Kenner, 504-618-3398; 2633 St. Claude Ave., 504-228-4149; 10709 Chef Menteur Highway, Suite 1, 504-294-1096; freezystreetnola.com)
A local take on rolled ice cream gives you the option to work any of Freezy Street’s snowball flavors into a custom-made ice cream. Choose from snowball flavors ranging from Dutch apple pie to tangerine to buttered popcorn for a truly one-of-a-kind ice cream concoction.
Sweet Wonders Rolled Ice Cream (4421 Clearview Parkway, Suite B, Metairie, 504-644-9742; www.facebook.com/sweetwondersnola)
This shop serves a variety of fruity and cake-based rolled ice cream flavors with unlimited toppings and no extra fee for customized rolls. A NOLA’s Dream combines bread pudding, pralines and caramel, while a Ferrero Rocher features the classic hazelnut chocolates and caramel.
Ice Queen NOLA (3304 W. Esplanade Ave., Suite B7, Metairie, 504-302-7000; www.metairieicecreamrolls.com)
This spot, which opened last spring, has plenty of Southeast Asian-influenced and tropical ice cream flavors to choose from, like the sweet red bean-infused Miss You and the Passion Lover with mango and passionfruit. The Morning Call flavor includes coffee, Oreos and condensed milk.
Mac & Moon at Auction House Market (801 Magazine St., 504-372-4321; www.auctionhousemarket.com/mac-moon)
Vegans also can participate in the rolled ice cream trend. Mac & Moon is a macaron stand that also serves vegan and gluten-free ice cream rolls topped with macarons and boba. Rotating flavors and bases offer endless combinations, like a vanilla ice cream base with sesame seeds and popping boba topped with a watermelon macaron.
The Faubourg Marigny restaurant returns with creative cocktails and bistro fare.
Snowballs to try
Watermelon-Jalapeno from Imperial Woodpecker Sno-Balls (3511 Magazine St., 251-366-7777; www.iwsnoballs.com)
This house-made snowball soothes you with sweet watermelon, then follows up with a kick of spicy jalapeno — a juxtaposition of the hot flavor and cold consistency.
Throw Me Something Mister from SNO-LA (2311 N. Causeway Blvd., Metairie; 3319 Williams Blvd., Kenner; 8108 Hampson St., 504-327-7669; snolasnowballs.com)
This festive combination of king cake cream, bananas foster cream and Mardi Gras green flavors is available year round. It’s stuffed with SNO-LA original cheesecake filling and topped with condensed milk. Some of the stand’s interesting menu (and off-the-menu) offerings are named after customers.
Pink Squirrel from Sal's Sno-Balls (1823 Metairie Ave, Metairie, 504-666-1823)
A light pink sweet treat with nectar and almond flavors, mixed and stuffed with vanilla ice cream and topped with condensed milk.
White Russian from Bubby’s Snoballs (247 Harrison Ave., 504-905-2366; www.facebook.com/bubbyssnoballs)
A cream flavor much like its coffee liqueur-and-cream alcoholic counterpart but minus the booze.
Grasshopper from Pandora’s Snowballs (901 N. Carrollton Ave., 504-486-8644; www.facebook.com/PandorasSnowballs)
Addis NOLA serves traditional Ethiopian food in Mid-City
A mint chocolate-flavored treat that’s the snowball equivalent to an Andes mint.
Buttered Popcorn from Freezy Street (617 N. Broad St., 678-914-3788; 2424 Williams Blvd., Suite R, Kenner, 504-618-3398; 2633 St Claude Ave., 504-228-4149; 10709 Chef Menteur Highway, Suite 1, 504-294-1096; www.freezystreetnola.com)
This sweet and salty concoction allows you to feel like you’re snacking on a tub of popcorn in an air-conditioned movie theater — for less than what it would cost you to actually go to the movies.