A gourmet ice cream boutique in Hong Kong that sources its cream from France, milk from Australia and vanilla bourbon from Madagascar drew curious crowds with adventurous palates at an international food expo last week for its lobster and foie gras flavored desserts.
Arron Liu's Ice Cream Gallery was a crowd favorite at this year's edition of the Hong Kong Food Expo for audacious ice cream flavors that aim to elevate "fine ice cream" to fine dining.
Since 1994, Liu has developed more than 600 ice cream flavors, some of which are inspired by French haute cuisine - like the foie gras and salmon varieties - and regional ingredients like Malaysian durian and Philippine mangoes. Ingredients for their ice creams are all natural.
Some of their newest flavors include ginger vinegar and egg ice cream made with Italian black vinegar; French bacon and egg ice cream made with American bacon; and wine ice cream from Canada.
Liu's ice cream was showcased at the food expo's Gourmet Zone, a new feature this year.
Arron Liu's ice creams are created in four distinct styles: French crème glacée, made from full-fat, French cream characterized by its no-holds-barred richness; traditional Japanese ice cream made with green tea, red beans or sake; Italian gelato made primarily with milk; and frozen yogurt, a tart, fat- and sugar-free version of their ice cream.
Ingredients are sourced from around the world with truffles from Italy, sesame from Greece, nuts from Spain and gold-grade Japanese green tea.
While the ice creamery offers classic flavors like chocolate and strawberry, its deluxe range pushes palates into haute cuisine territory with flavors like French rose chocolate made with organic French roses, salmon ice cream made with Norwegian salmon, black truffle ice cream, and foie gras in ice cream form.
But like any fancy suit-and-tie restaurant, Liu's gourmet flavors don't come cheap. A 500ml tub of foie gras ice cream, for instance, is $800 HKD, or €71.
Half-way around the world, Ben & Bill's Chocolate Emporium also sells a lobster-flavored ice cream made with butter and local lobster from Maine.
Ice cream has become the newest medium for adventurous chefs looking to push the envelope - and some buttons.
To avenge what was becoming an insect scourge in Columbia, Missouri, a local ice creamery candied cicadas - a relative of spittlebugs and leafhoppers - and tossed them in an ice cream base of brown sugar and butter.
In London, another high end boutique The Icecreamists snagged headlines for its breast milk ice cream called the "Baby Gaga."