Momofuku Milk Bar
251 E 13th St, New York, NY 10003
Ice cream is always an after thought for me. As a kid, soft serve meant overly sweet McDonald’s sundaes or after we chased the ice cream truck down on our bikes. Oh and of course Ikea “frozen yogurt”. But all of them had one thing in common — they were overly sweet and overly milky, in a fake milk powder way.
I kept seeing Instagram photos of Momofuku Milk Bar’s cereal milk soft serve. You know when you let Corn Pops or Fruit Loops sit too long in milk and the milk becomes a pond of sparkly sugar crack? Yeah, I was afraid the cereal soft serve would be like this.
I was wrong.
There were two soft serve flavours at the East Village location. We tried sampled the chocolate chip pomegranate flavour. Guhhhhh! Too SWEET. And with the word pomegranate in it, I was waiting for the tartness to come through. The name is just deceiving. At this point, I was worried this ice cream run was going to be a let down.
“I’ll just have the cereal milk one,” I said.
“Would you like the cereal bits on it?” the store clerk asked.
“YES,” I replied. My picture wouldn’t be complete without the cereal, am I right?
Just as I finished ordering, a swarm of men in suits and work clothes came in. Maybe seven of them, who had their sleeves rolled up and shouldered laptop bags. Some of them ordered shakes, others the cereal soft serve, some cookies…and one guy ordered a — wait for it — cereal soft serve shake!
Cookie guy ended up outside on the bench, with his back against us. As we propped our legs up on the window sill and leaned against the store’s wooden bar section, I ate the ice cream in disbelief and laughed at how fast cookie guy chomped on his cookie.
“Hard day at work,” said the BFF. We bursted out laughing, like annoying teenage girls.
“I don’t know why this is so funny, but it just is,” I replied as more suit guys gathered outside, sipping on shakes, eating cookies and spooning delicious ice cream into their mouths.
To void my worry about overly sweet ice cream, the cereal soft serve was the perfect amount of sweetness. I ate the cereal specks first, scooping it with the tiny wooden stick they give you, from bottom to top, making sure to catch some ice cream along the way. (It gets a little messy and unfortunately you lose some cereal.)
The cereal is slightly salty and the pieces are smaller than the average corn flake. It’s a good size, that doesn’t cut the roof of your mouth even if you eat it really quickly. (I’m not the only who inhales an assortment of cereals and cuts the roof of my mouth am I?)
It’s a little disappointing when the ring of cereal bits are gone, but the soft serve holds up on its own. It reminded me of the dairy products in Taiwan — slightly salty and a vanilla based dairy taste.
The best part is when I got to the bottom, there was a cluster of cereal bits waiting for me! Apparently that’s what they do and I must say, it was an excellent treat to find at the bottom.
Be sure to add the ring of cereal, otherwise, a tad plain to enjoy. It’s the texture and mixture of flavours that did it for me. The cup is easy to transport and carry so eating in or taking out are both great choices. Large enough to share, small enough to be a treat.