When you pair delicious ice cream and aesthetic branding together, you end up with a successful product that attracts plenty of happy customers and devoted fans.
We’re talking about Elephant Garden Creamery (EGC)—a local ice cream business that has been serving its artisan frozen treats at various farmers markets and events for the past year. It will soon be moving from its travelling ice-cream cart into an East Vancouver space that will be their permanent home.
Owner and founder Betsy Ng started making this popular treat when she was still working in a quality assurance position for a food production facility a few years ago. She wasn’t able to use any creativity on the job, but that changed when an ice-cream maker showed up on her desk one day—a gift from one of her former colleagues.
It allowed her to tap into the other part of her brain, and six years later, she’s created a full line-up of unique ice-cream flavours. Some of her most popular creations include cereal & milk, avocado milk, Hong Kong milk tea, genmaicha matcha, blueberry cheesecake, Vietnamese coffee, Thai iced tea, ube and taro, and mango sticky rice.
You’ll notice that a lot of the flavours on EGC’s menu are Asian-inspired, which isn’t coincidental. “They have to do with the food that I eat and my background because I feel like Vancouver is a very multicultural place, so my flavours are influenced by the type of foods I eat,” Ng told the Straight in a phone interview. “I still try to create some original flavours that can’t be missed.”
Its rotating roster of seasonal features range from honey-pineapple to peach-basil to blackberry-sage sorbetto, and butter-sweet-corn to mont blanc to cantaloupe-melon sherbet.
“A lot of customers that come to me say the flavours I offer are unique,” said Ng. “They say it’s not the common flavours they find at ice cream shops, so I think that’s the reason why they keep coming back.”
Not only are there distinctive choices, but Ng’s ice cream also seem to enlighten taste buds.
“Some people say my ice cream has depth to the flavour,” explained Ng. “For example the mango lassi, my customers will taste the mango note first, and then after, the cardamom flavour hits them.”
EGC has secured a storefront in the Grandview-Woodlands neighbourhood, and the 16 seat space covers just under 1,000-square-feet. Expect plenty of natural lighting, and subtle elephant imagery—something that Ng feels will make people happy.
“We want it to be like a little sanctuary, a safe haven spot for people to enjoy ice cream. There will be a touch of whimsy moments here and there,” said Ng. “We want to also include elements of lush greenery and west coast minimalism, like by using natural materials like wood and greens. It’s not going to be a dark space, but a really comfortable and tranquil kind of setting.”
The soon-to-open spot already sounds like it’s going to be very photogenic, and we’re sure that ice cream-lovers around town will flock to this spot as soon as construction is complete.
“We want to have a welcoming and charming ambience. It’s going to be an additional destination to the local ice cream community,” added Ng. “I’m just happy that I have the opportunity to create this for people to enjoy.”
Elephant Garden Creamy is scheduled to open late summer. You can find them at various farmers markets leading up to its opening.More