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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

An Evening At Hokey Pokey

I went back to Hokey Pokey to try out the winning ice cream combination that one of the team of food bloggers had won. “Secret Affair’ was the creation I was looking for.  It was not yet listed on the hall of fame, so I opted for mango delight with crushed nuts.

15days ago, I was there with my food blogger friends. It was a fun event, when all my food bloggers had gathered outside Hokey Pokey one evening to taste different ice cream flavors. It was not just that, we were divided into four teams, and each team had to make 3 different kinds of ice creams using our imagination.

In a competition, each team had used their imagination creating amazing combinations that included ice creams, nuts, Indian sweets, chocolates, etc. Team B had won with their creation of ‘Secret Affair. They had used coffee ice cream. They had added few pieces of crushed honeycomb and few chocolate chip brownies to come up with new creation to be included into hall of fame.

At Hokey Pokey, the main idea is to be creative in three steps. Pick the flavor, pick the mix in and watch them churn out an ice cream on cold stone. But I am afraid, not many people are noticing that. The friends that I took along with me; did not bother to see ‘hall of Fame’, nor did they notice the cold stone that is used for churning ice creams, they headed straight to the area of ice creams, tasted a spoonful of each flavor and then decided on the flavor they wanted.
That is really sad. Nobody pointed out that Hokey Pokey is more than just spoonful of a scoop. Nowhere was the fact stressed that Hokey Pokey outlet also have a live kitchen, where customers can order an ice cream creation and get it made in front of their eyes.

I learnt the first hand knowledge of mixing Ice Creams when I met Founder, Rohan Mirchandani. He explained that they custom make every scoop taking into account the taste and the preference of the customer. The brand has to overcome the unfamiliarity of the customers with made-to-order assembly. The pounding of ice creams with chocolates, nuts and sweets and do it with flourish on the cold stone is what sets it apart from other parlors.
That is the brand’s sole focus.
Hokey pokey is a flavour of ice cream in New Zealand, consisting of plain vanilla ice cream with small, solid lumps of honeycomb toffee. Hokey pokey is a New Zealand term for honeycomb toffee. Wikipedia
It is this idea that Rohan has brought to India.

Rohan says he wants to position Hokey Pokey in the same league as Haagen Dazs and Ben&Jerry ice creams. He explains how the product has more fat content (16%milk fat), less air and is all vegetarian to cater to larger segment of Indians. To take its interactive ice cream counters beyond its own stores, the brand has tied up with different outlets that include coffee chain across the country.

I turned to my friend and asked her to watch while I select my favorite. She saw him remove a scoop of mango ice cream (that I had selected) and keep it on the cold stone, crush few pieces of cashew nuts and almonds (on my request) and mix it with flourish. She was impressed.

I too, want one like this for me” she said

The good news is that Food Food Channel was there to record the event and in case you missed it, you can see it on U-tube .here

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