Ocean City Today
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South Pole brings creativity with ice cream roll treats

By Kara Hallissey | Jul 27, 2017
Photo by: Kara Hallissey The Asian-style ice cream rolls are created using ice plates kept at 12-degrees Celsius, which turns the liquid-base into ice cream. On Tuesday afternoon, employee Sakshi Neupane makes ice cream rolls at the North Division Street shop.

(July 28, 2017) At South Pole Ice Cream Roll on North Division Street, customers choose from a number of flavors and toppings before their custom-made order is created on ice plates.

“We use fresh ingredients and it’s rolled in two minutes, right in front of your eyes,” said owner Yu “Jack” Chen. “This is new for Ocean City and 90 percent of customers are surprised and have never seen this type of ice cream.”

The Asian-style ice cream rolls are created using ice plates kept at 12 degrees Celsius, which turns the liquid base into ice cream while employees make the order.

First, customers can choose from a dozen flavors including strawberry shortcake, s’mores, Oreo, chocolate, coffee, peanut butter, mint, banana and other additional fruits.

“It’s just like painting and the different strokes,” Chen said. “We have bases [such as vanilla, coffee or strawberry] and create flavors using them. It’s ice cream art.”

After watching the ice cream rolls being created, customers then pick up to three toppings for their sweet treat.

Honey, chocolate drizzle, coconut, caramel, whipped cream, sliced almond, roasted marshmallow, graham crackers and rainbow sprinkles are a few of the 15 options.

“The ice cream being made fresh in front of you … makes you want to try it,” Chen said. “Most ice cream shops have a huge container and scoop it out. [At South Pole] you order one and see us put it together.”

The fresh ingredients have the same milky texture as regular ice cream, but without preservatives or stabilizers, Chen said.

In October, Chen was in downtown New York when he saw people waiting in line for ice cream rolls and decided to try one.

“I loved that it was ice cream in a non-traditional way with Asian and American-style [influences] mixed together,” Chen said. “It was so great and fresh. I had to bring it to Ocean City and Salisbury.”

This style of freshly made and custom ice cream was created on the streets of Thailand, Chen said.

Chen, who is originally from New York and moved to Salisbury about 10 years ago, started looking for properties in January and loved the location on North Division Street.

“A lot of people know about Tony’s Pizza and we are located right behind,” Chen said. “The traffic [from the Route 50 bridge] comes up here. Some people call [South Pole] the blue house.”

South Pole Ice Cream Roll in Ocean City officially opened on July 1, while the Salisbury University Seagull Square location is slated to open on Aug. 8.

The shop is open every day during summer. The North Division Street store is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from noon to 1 a.m. and Monday through Thursday from noon to midnight. Chen plans to close for the offseason in November, while the Salisbury location will stay open year-round.

For more information, visit www.southpoleicecreamroll.com, search “South Pole Ice Cream” on Facebook or call Chen at 443-736-9988.

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