Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Passionflower (Asian inspired Ice-Cream)

Shop 2, 168 Bourke Street, Melbourne, VIC 3000

Passionflower on Urbanspoon
And now, for something a bit different! Scoring only 63% likes on Urbanspoon, the most common complaints relate to the desserts being overpriced and the wait staff not being very friendly. Think of this as a food court outlet and you won't be disappointed. Think of the wait staff as standoffish and too cool for school and you'll fit right in. Ultimately, I think the sacrifice is worth it for some of the great ice-cream flavours though I would say it's really quite pricey.

The Place
One thing I like about this place is that it is always quite cold inside and so, in the Melbourne summer, it's a great escape and in winter, it's actually slightly warmer from outside and not the furnace that some places become in winter because they feel the need to turn up the heat! Moveable tables and chairs for various combinations but it all usually goes to pot when a big group arrives, and the wait staff doesn't know how to herd them or manage crowd control.
Ignore the "no toilet" sign - it should say "toilet for customers only".

Other things to do close by: It's a block and a half up from Bourke Street Mall.

The Food
The menu looks really pretty but I am usually there for just the scoops of ice-cream. My favourite flavours include: Azuki (Red Bean), Black Sesame, Lychee Rose (yes I like this, though my friend Paul thinks it smells like the wardrobes of Nannas!). They have Durian too but you're not going to catch me having this, and all the traditional ice cream flavours are on offer.

The constructed desserts always look amazing and too sweet but friend who have had them have never complained. I would note that it's really pricey ice-cream though, capitalising on the rarity of Asian inspired ice-creams in Melbourne/Australia.

The Service
Wait staff who are sometimes too busy talking to each other to pay real attention to the customers. This place is no worse than the thousands of places in Asia with aloof staff who's whose main task is to take your orders, not entertain you or pretend to be interested in your life story :).

Occasionally, I really want Azuki or Black Sesame Ice Cream - so I will always go there - until there's an alternative somewhere.

A Cultural Moment
Sweet Corn Ice Cream is amazing - why aren't more people selling it and enjoying it?

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