‘Hot’ ice cream a hit in Bicol
LEGAZPI CITY—Want to try something “hotter” than the summer heat?
A restaurant in this city is offering something cold to make one hot—its trademark “sili” (chili) ice cream.
First introduced by the homegrown restaurant 1st Colonial Grill in 2004, the sili ice cream, whose major ingredients include “siling labuyo” and coconut milk, has become a hit among locals and tourists.
The restaurant is now offering the ice cream in varying levels of spiciness.
Owner Elmer Boy Aspe, said he came up with the three levels because he wanted to satisfy those who are curious and fond of eating sili ice cream.
“It’s a challenge for our customers. Those who dine at our restaurant would taste the ice cream so they will know if they can endure the ice cream’s spiciness,” he said.
Level 1 has a “ticklish kick of spice sliding down your throat” and can be eaten by children, Aspe said. The next level has a “tickling turned pinching sensation,” while Level 3 has a “kick of spice needing courage.”
But to customers who wanted more kick, the restaurant offers the spiciest of them all—the Mayon Volcano level sili ice cream. It is served with a shot of fresh milk to balance the heat.
“This is the real challenge and a life-changing experience. After this, you will be a certified ‘oragon!’” Aspe said, referring to the Bicolano tag of “strong and fearless.”
Aspe said the restaurant valued the experience of its customers and wanted them to share their experience of tasting this Bicolano dessert with their families and friends.
Tourist Kevin Myer, 45, a retired US Navy personnel, and his daughter, Mandie, enjoyed every teaspoonful of the Mayon Volcano level ice cream.
“It’s sweet, creamy and very delicious, but really hot,” said a smiling Mandie, her tongue sticking out as the heat kicked in.
“It takes several seconds before you feel the spicy flavor kicking in,” Kevin said.
The restaurant also offers a variety of homegrown flavors like Bicol’s pili, “malunggay” (moringa), “tinutong na bigas” (roasted rice), “gabi” (yam), “salabat” (ginger tea), “calamansi” and “camote” (sweet potato).
A serving of the sili ice cream costs P89, coming in three scoops. Customers can also opt to have assorted flavors per serving.
The sili ice cream is available in the restaurant’s branches in Legazpi City and Daraga town in Albay province, and in Naga City.
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