East Lansing has finally jumped on the rolled ice cream trend, and there’s now a shop downtown. Unicha Tea & Ice Cream had its very successful grand opening in mid-September. Rolled ice cream is a Thai ice cream trend that took the internet by storm with the unique way it’s made. What started as a popular street food in Thailand is now a popular dessert trend with shops popping up everywhere.
The best part about rolled ice cream is how they make it. At Unicha, the ice cream makers start off by pouring the milky ice-cream base onto a cold metal slab. They use little metal spatulas to chop up your toppings and swirl the base around until it turns into ice cream. The ice cream is then spread out onto the entire slab, and the person making it uses their spatula to scrape it up into little rolls. The rolls are nestled into a cup with whatever toppings you could want on top. The result is ice cream that is sweet and softer than normal ice cream. The dessert puts a new spin on the typical MSU Dairy Store or Coldstone ice cream that you get when your sweet tooth kicks in.
Unicha uses natural flavors and no preservatives. You’re sure to find something you like with their variety of flavors. Their Funky Monkey flavor tastes just like Nutella and banana, while the Cookie Monster flavor puts a new spin on Oreos. Unicha also has some interesting flavors you may have never tried before like their Silly Taro made with taro root or their Tokyo Moment made with matcha green tea and Thai red beans.
The experience at Unicha is similar to Coldstone. The staff is very knowledgeable on the flavors and what goes best with them. Each cup costs $6.42 and includes a base flavor, three toppings and a syrup. You can pick from a variety of fruit toppings, candy, cereal, Boba and more. If you get roasted marshmallows on top, they will roast the marshmallows right in front of you, too. You also get a huge portion that’s good for sharing with a friend.
If ice cream isn’t up your alley, they also offer hand crafted bubble tea, milkshakes and smoothies. A unique option you can get on your drink is Unicha’s signature creama float. A creama float is made from cream cheese and gives your drink a richer and creamier flavor.
Unicha is located on Division street right next to Panda Express. The location is small, so plan to sit outside and eat your ice cream or take a walk on campus while you eat. Unicha is both a fun experience and great ice cream all rolled into one.