Even if I find the words “Science” and “Ice-cream” very antonymous (science = laborious, icecream = pleasure), “Nitrogen ice-cream” is one creation too novel to ignore.
Chin Chin Lab has been around London for a while, making a dessert that exists since the Persian Empire with an innovative and very 21st-century method. With tanks and tanks of liquid nitrogen, they operate like a batch of food scientists, transforming a hitherto modest and ordinary ice-cream parlour into a space that looks somewhat vocational and tech-y.
They freeze their handmade bases with liquid nitrogen and claim to have pioneer this ice-cream making method in Europe. At the shop, customers can catch the rather intriguing sight of vapour cloud fuming ferociously from the mixers as flavoured bases meet nitrogen and transform into solid.
Flavours of the ice-cream change almost every week, some selected according to the seasons. They are only a few of them each time but not all falls within the scope of our fair imagination. There were once Guinness, hot sauce, tobacco, potato chips etc. This time when I visited, there were Pondicherry vanilla, Valrona chocolate, Brown-wich, Baked plum and Pine/nut caramel.
Craving for something fruity and slightly sour, I opted baked plum with caramel pretzel as topping.
The texture of the ice-cream was really smooth with perfect consistency. (Do scroll up and look at the close-up picture of the scoop). It didn’t look as rough or I would say porous like regular ice-cream. It’s a lot more refined and glossy.
It cost £3.95 a scoop with a choice of either sauce or a topping. The process was fun and fast, sleek and wacky. Who would have thought that a process so dull and hum-drum like ice-cream making could have such theatrical potential.
Address: 49-50 Camden Lock Place, London, NW1 8AF, UK. Located just under the railway bridge at Camden Lock Market. Open 12pm to 7pm everyday.
With love x