Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery may be known for its French baked goods like macarons and tarts, but the Time Warner Center location of this famous bakery is stepping out of its comfort zone and into the ice cream zone. This summer, Bouchon Bakery will be selling homemade ice cream pints, including pistachio, chocolate, and vanilla. The bakery may expand into other frozen venues like ice cream sandwiches and cones, or other flavors, but right now they are sticking with the basics. The Daily Meal got the chance to taste Bouchon’s newest creations and watch the ice cream-making process, handcrafted by Bouchon Bakery’s executive chef Nicholas Bonamico.
Get a sneak peak at the whole process by checking out The Daily Meal's Bouchon Ice Cream Tour (Slideshow)
The ice cream itself is nothing fancy. There are no toppings, caramel nut clusters, or even waffle cones. The team at Bouchon simply sells the three varieties in pint form. Each scoop of ice cream is soft and creamy, but not overly-so, and the flavors of the nutty pistachio, bold chocolate, and pronounced vanilla bean are highlighted in the frozen concoction, in opposition to the super-sweet taste of commercial ice cream. For the chocolate ice cream, which Bonamico demonstrated, they use a high concentration of 64 percent dark Valrhona ice cream from Madagascar, which has a strong, fruity, dark chocolate flavor profile.
“Most ice cream you taste uses a high concentration of sugar, which dilutes the flavor,” Bonamico told The Daily Meal. “This is made in the style of Italian gelato, but we call it ice cream to avoid any confusion.”
Gelato, he said, has less fat and dairy, which makes it creamier than American ice cream. His concoction is made with an Italian gelato machine, using inverted sugar, milk, some water, a stabilizer (which keeps the ice cream’s solid consistency), and milk powder. Surprisingly, he said, his ice cream does not use cream or eggs.
No complaints here. Get your gourmet Bouchon ice cream at the Time Warner Center today.
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Joanna Fantozzi is an Associate Editor with The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter@JoannaFantozzi