IMAGE Vincent Coscolluela

10 Places in Manila That Are Leveling Up the Soft-Serve Game

Justice is soft-served.


 

(SPOT.ph) Soft-serve ice cream can be found pretty much anywhere—fast-service chains, convenience stores, buffets...heck, we even rounded up the 10 best budget-friendly ones that won’t leave a hole in your wallet for your last-minute cravings. But for days when you just want to treat yo’ self (because you deserve it), why not spend a little extra on some gourmet softees? We found some new versions that are worth trying out.

 


 

Cow Cow Ice by Tokyo Milk Cheese Factory

Japanese brand Cow Cow Ice by Tokyo Milk Cheese Factory serves some delicious Hokkaido-style ice cream that almost borders on savory for its real cheese flavor. The soft-serve comes in three delicious variants: Milk (P130), or Hokkaido milk fused with indulgent mascarpone cheese; Cheese (P150), made with sharp Gouda and mild cream cheese; and Mix (150), a combination of both flavors. Here’s a tip: The ice cream works well with their cheese biscuits, too!

 

Cow Cow Ice by Tokyo Milk Cheese Factory is at SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City; Power Plant Mall, Makati City; NAIA Terminal 3 (Domestic), Pasay City; and Alabang Town Center, Muntinlupa City.

 


 

Tsujiri

This 155-year-old brand from Japan serves some of the best matcha desserts in the Metro. They use actual green tea extract so don’t expect to get any artificial flavors here—this is the real deal. Plus, they have some pretty sublime soft-serves, too. Take, for one, their Tsujiri Sundae (P285), a parfait-like concoction that combines various tastes and textures from chestnuts, chewy mochi, rice crispies, and of course, their ultra-velvety soft ice cream, which you can get in plain vanilla or matcha.

 

Tsujiri is at 2/F S Maison at The Conrad, SM Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City.

 


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The Lost Bread

The Lost Bread's Strawberry Rose Soft-Serve is one of their most popular options, but if you’re the adventurous type, The Lost Bread’s Sub-Zero Soft-Serve Cup (P145) is your best bet. The ice cream’s cool-blue tone alone will get heads turning, much less its smoky theatrics thanks to liquid nitrogen. It comes in four, lip-smacking flavors, too, such as the Chocolate Popcorn, made up of chocolate popcorn and syrup, and Strawberry Fruit Cereals with fruit cereals and a tangy strawberry syrup. 

 

See a list of The Lost Bread branches.

 


 

LAVA Cheese Tarts

Popularly known for their gooey cheese tarts, this homegrown brand has recently come up with yet another mouthwatering creation. If you haven’t heard about LAVA Cheese Tarts’ Premium Cheese Soft Ice Cream (P95), you’re missing out on some really good soft-serve. Made from fresh carabao’s milk and four kinds of Philippine and European cheeses—as they say, “never from powder”—this creamy cold treat is the perfect partner for your piping hot cheese tart. Spruce it up a bit and get the LAVA Eruptions (P135), which is basically a bigger portion of their cheese soft-serve mixed with three toppings of your choice. Mix-and-match from their motley of fresh and sweetened fruit, nuts, chocolates, and even cheese-tart bits; each combination will give leave your taste buds surprised.

 

See a list of LAVA Cheese Tarts branches.

 


 

SNOG

Don’t be fooled by its dark appearance—SNOG’s creamy black ice cream is made with all-natural activated charcoal, which can actually whiten your teeth and prevent nasty hangovers. Their Dark Matcha Parfait (P119) has crunchy cookie bits as well as sweet-tangy fruit slices like strawberry and kiwi. Besides that, they also serve some pretty refreshing soda floats that are likewise topped with the dark-colored milky soft-serve.

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SNOG is at 5/F SM City Manila, Marcelino Street, Manila City.

 


 

PABLO

This famous Japanese cheese-tart shop from Osaka set foot on our shores in 2016 to share their all-time crowd favorites to hungry Filipinos. PABLO makes sure you always have something new to try at their cheese tart shops—their Soft-Served Ice Cream (P150) comes in two yummy flavors: Cheese and Matcha Cheese. This thick and creamy delight will cool you down on hot days and make for the perfect after-meal treat.  

 

See a list of PABLO branches.

 


 

Exchange Alley Coffee House

Besides good specialty coffee, which they are originally known for, Exchange Alley Coffee House also serves some kickass soft-serve ice cream. This Alabang café is the brainchild of Jonathan Choi of Magnum Opus fame and their soft-serve ice cream is one the best and milkiest you’ll have. Have a cup of their Affogato (P160) or Afauxgato (P160) (get it?), which uses a rich homemade dark chocolate hard shell from Risa's 60% South Cotabato chocolate instead of a shot of espresso. Either way, you’ll know what we’re talking about once you get a spoonful of this creamy and indulgent treat.

 

Exchange Alley Coffee House is at Molito Complex, Alabang, Muntinlupa City.

 


 

Churreria La Lola

Who would have thought that one of the best churro spots in the Metro also serves some mean soft-serve? And in unique flavors, too. But if you think about it, pairing this sweet cold snack with their hot and savory churros makes a lot of sense due to the balance of flavors—and is actually a worthwhile experience. Churreria La Lola’s Ube Espesyal (P95) isn’t just deliciously decadent, it’s also affordable! You can choose to have it on a crispy churro bowl or in a cup with a long churro lazo. Maybe the only downside is they only serve it in their Glorietta 4 branch...we're hoping at least for now.

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Available only at Churreria La Lola, Glorietta 4, Ayala Center, Makati City.

 


 

Kiss the Tiramisu

The newest addition to this sweet bunch is Kiss the Tiramisu, an ice cream shop that’s been making waves in South Korea and now, Metro Manila. Cheese lovers will find a new haven in this minimalist-chic café for their Mascarpone-laden soft ice cream served in elegant, picture-perfect goblets that you can take home. Don’t leave without trying the sweet and savory Injeolmi (P265), a nutty creation of their milky soft-serve topped with sticky rice balls, roasted soybean powder, and roasted soybean sauce.

 

Kiss the Tiramisu is at Three Central, Valero Street, Legazpi Village, Makati City.

 


 

Le Petit Soufflé

There seems to be no stopping Le Petit Soufflé when it comes to introducing out-of-the-box dishes and desserts. Apart from the French-Japanese bistro’s mouthwatering, fluffy soufflés, their soft-serve ice cream also deserves a shout out. Although the frozen treat isn’t as popular as their baked creations, it scores high marks when it comes to imagination and, of course, flavor. Try their Strawberry and Lychee Parfait (285), made up of a vanilla and matcha custard soft-serve base with almond dacquoise, fresh strawberries and lychee, matcha jelly, matcha mocha, and a dusting of earthy matcha powder. If you’re not in the mood for anything extra, their Century City Mall branch serves solo softees in Vanilla (P90), Matcha (P90), and Swirl (P90), a combination of both flavors.

 

Le Petit Soufflé has branches at Mega Fashion Hall, Mandaluyong City; and Century City Mall, Kalayaan, Makati City.

 

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