From New York City to Los Angeles, Montreal to Atlanta, one of the latest food trends to sweep the country is rolled ice cream. This summer, St. Pete will join the craze as Sweet Charlie's debuts at 1010 Central Avenue in the EDGE District.
The movement began last year when ice cream shops started springing up across the U.S. serving cups stuffed with small rolls of ice cream and topped with an assortment of extras, including fruit, candy, drizzles and more. Lines regularly snake around the corner at establishments like 10Below in NYC and Hi B3ar in Boston. Although the trend is brand new here in the States, this method of making ice cream has been around on the streets of Thailand and other Asian countries for quite a while.
So how is rolled ice cream created? According to Sweet Charlie’s website, “each ice cream or frozen yogurt is made to order on a super, cold surface that is below 20 degrees. Because the surface is so cold, very small ice crystals are formed quickly. These ice crystals create the freshest, healthiest, most delicious end product.”
Sweet Charlie’s will offer 10 flavors of their specialty ice cream, such as Smore Please (graham cracker, chocolate, and roasted marshmallow) and So Cal (acai, honey, coconut and banana). These ingredients are chopped and pounded into the ice cream before being rolled up. Then you can select from 15 toppings (free of charge!), like strawberry, chocolate chips, whipped cream, donut bits, and M&Ms. Also, for the health conscious or dairy-free friend in your life, Sweet Charlie’s will carry a nonfat yogurt and a nada-moo (vegan) base.
And if you are feeling a bit daring, order the Tall Charley, which allows you to ditch your cup for a glazed donut.
Sweet Charlie's was founded by Kyle Billig, who opened his first location in Philadelphia in May 2016. After much success, plans are now in the works for another 5 stores in cities such as Atlanta, Georgia and Cherry Hill, New Jersey.
The St. Pete location will be owned by husband and wife duo Jim Kennedy and Lisa Terefenko. "We love Downtown St. Pete. And I also think the Edge District is going to explode very soon," says Kennedy.
Kennedy hopes buildout will take around 60 days, which will give Sweet Charlie's a June opening date -- just in time for the hot weather. He is also scouting real estate in Tampa for a 2nd location in the Bay area.
Sweet Charlie's will be located in Downtown St. Pete at 1010 Central Avenue #102, which was formerly occupied by Yoga Energy Studio. For grand opening announcements and updates, be sure to check out Sweet Charlie's website and follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.