Cover (Image: Via Tokyo)

When life gets hard, go get soft serve—here's where to find the most delicious ice creams in the city

Summer days should be for frolicking, enjoying the sunshine and licking trails of melted ice cream running down your wrists. While every child growing up in Hong Kong will be familiar with the sugary tinkle of the Mister Softee van, the city has plenty of other soft serve options that will deliver that light, silky, icy thrill that can sometimes beat the slow melt of a thick chewy scoop of ice cream.

Related: The Best Dessert Delivery In Hong Kong

Godiva

Godiva’s decadent chocolate soft serve is premium Belgian chocolate served in a cone. Rich and creamy, customers can choose from dark chocolate, white chocolate vanilla bean and swirl (a combination of the two). The ice cream is served in a Belgian waffle cone which is dipped in either dark or milk Belgian chocolate and sprinkled with praline almonds, adding texture and flavour to the already satisfying ice cream. 

Godiva, various branches

Dama

Dama actually started out as a cold-press juice store in Central’s Gough Street and is now known for their delicious vegan, plant-based ice creams and coffees. Their super striking charcoal waffle cones provide a strong contrast with the vibrant soft serves on their menu, the best looking one being the bright fuchsia dragon fruit flavour. With its earthy, sweet flavour, it may not be for everyone—neither is their pungent durian soft serve—but their social media is always updated with the latest flavours, from Taiwanese lychee to Dong Ding oolong tea, durian to charcoal.

Dama, Shop 411, 4/F, K11 Musea, No.18 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong

Tenren

Famed Taiwanese tea purveyors Tenren may be best known for their shaken bubble teas and brews, but their delicate soft serve ice creams have a bit of a following as well. Unlike other places where the tea flavour can often get drowned out by sugar, Tenren’s Iron Buddha and Assam soft serve ice creams have that distinctive tannin among the fragrance of freshly brewed tea.

Tenren, various locations

Related: The Best Places For Tea In Hong Kong

Via Tokyo

Another stalwart on the cold dessert scene, Via Tokyo’s soft serves are on the richer and creamier end of the spectrum—meaning the curls hold their shape and you can enjoy the ice cream at a slightly slower pace. The shop is known for their matcha soft serve, though we personally enjoy the nutty hojicha as well as their deceivingly simple Hokkaido milk soft serve. The cafe also partners with Cremia to serve their iconic smooth waffle cones. Tip: take your soft serve to the next level with additions such as adzuki bean, Shirotama balls, and matcha warabi mochi.

Via Tokyo, 106-126 Leighton Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong

Baekmidang

The South Korean soft serve brand is best known for their rich and creamy ice cream with a distinctive milky flavour, and they also do an exceptional soy milk soft serve that's great for dairy-free diners. A tall swirl goes on top of a light and crispy cone, and leaves you feeling satisfied without being overwhelmed. Check out the more esoteric offerings as well, such as the multigrain soy and milk ice cream that's finished off with a drizzle of 100 per cent Korean toasted sesame oil. 

Baekmidang, various locations

 

iCremeria

Featuring Japanese sweets and treats, iCremeria is known for its quality desserts. Try the store’s classic soft serve, or indulge in an elevated soft serve parfait with toppings like daifuku, anmitsu and fruit. Some of the parfait flavours to choose from are yuzu matcha anmitsu parfait, kuromitsu kinako parfait and Japanese peach soft cream parfait. Alternatively, try iCremeria’s affogatos, which consist of a hot drink (espresso, hot chocolate or matcha) poured over a swirl of soft serve!

iCremeria, various locations

Sweets House Cha Cha

Sweets House Cha Cha is the place to go if you want a rich, silky soft serve which melts immediately in your mouth. The shop’s signature ice cream flavours are Hokkaido milk and Kyoto Uji matcha. The Hokkaido milk soft serve is creamy and made using premium Hokkaido milk; the Kyoto Uji matcha is made using quality tea leaves and has the distinct fragrance of matcha tea. Choose a flavour (or two!), and enjoy it in either a crispy cone, waffle cup or smoothie. Ice cream addicts can take their soft serve a step further and sprinkle on a generous serving of Sweets House Cha Cha’s wide range of toppings, which include red bean paste, shiratama (Japanese rice ball) and Kyoto Uji matcha jelly cubes. 

Sweets House Cha Cha, various locations

ChaTreMue

As a tea brand that has deep roots in Thailand for over 75 years, ChaTreMue is determined to create Thai tea that fits the tastebuds of people around the world.  Having opened several branches in Hong Kong, the brand is known for their boba Thai tea, but their cha Thai soft serve is also worth a try. Kick the blazing heat away with this authentic Thai style ice cream.

ChaTreMue, various branches

Sugi Bee Garden

Holding the firm belief of producing the best honey in Japan, Sugi Bee Garden is a popular brand that has won customers’ hearts for a long time. Located in Sogo department store in the heart of Causeway Bay, the shop sells honey soft serve ice cream with fruity syrup for a fresh and sweet flavour profile. Do check this out if you are in favour of a healthier ice cream option.

Sugi Bee Garden, B2, Sogo Department Store, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong

This story was originally published on 12 August 2020 and updated on 13 July 2021