Considering translucent coffee is a thing, it should come as no surprise that black ice cream is happening, too. (Because where would we, as a society, be without ice cream in every conceivable colour?) Fortunately – or unfortunately, depending on which camp you’re in – it’s not liquorice flavoured. Made in not one but two ice-cream parlours, Little Damage in LA and Morgenstern’s in NYC, these black beauties are being hailed as the world’s first goth-friendly ice cream.
Little Damage, a quirky ice-cream shop in Los Angeles, serves an almond-flavoured activated charcoal soft serve. The coolest part? It comes in a pitch-black cone, which contrasts well with the ice cream’s dark grey colour. Called Black Roses, this flavour joins the parlour’s quirky array of flavours, including Unicorn Tears, Vegan Mango Sticky Rice and Chocolate Dip Cherry. Of course, the best part of an Instagram-worthy treat is what you can adorn it with, and Little Damage doesn’t fall short here either. Customers have decorated their goth-inspired cold treat with everything from Oreos, coconut shavings and cereal to caramel bits, M&Ms and caramel popcorn.
And, as is to be expected, some have even tried to force some rainbow into it.
Over at Morgenstern’s in New York, the black ice cream is darker and can be purchased by the tub. Named Black Coconut Ash, this version is flavoured with coconut cream and, although missing a colour-coordinated cone, is just as Instagram-worthy as its LA rival.
Closer to home, Cold Gold in Stellenbosch has an activated charcoal liquorice ice cream that’s dark grey. Owner Janine van Zyl has made over 800 flavours and caters for all sorts of intolerances and tastes, including vegan, banting, LCHF, diabetic and paleo options.
Some doctors, however, have come out in protest against the trend, saying it could do more harm than good. Speaking to Women’s Health, gastroenterologist Patricia Raymond cautioned that thanks to its powers of asbsorption, it can also absorb medication – such as birth control pills – making the drugs ineffective. It’s also associated with Coal Miner’s Lung and inflamation of the colon.
*29 May 2017: This article was updated to include concerns voiced by members of the medical fraternity.