Food Bloggers come up with some really whack yet oh so freakin brilliant ideas. Ideas that may not necessarily be good for the body, but brilliant nonetheless. It’s a good thing some of us don’t take ourselves too seriously cuz you you know what, the game would be boring as hell. That’s the situation that I’m talking about right now. A few of the Pork Gangstaz and their partners in crime came over to my joint for a Chocolate Ice Cream Party and Filipino BBQ. The weather was ON POINT so we spent some time on the deck soakin up the rays with the music cranked up, BBQ spitting fat and sheeerazz flowing as we anticipated the feeding frenzy. For ma peeps who couldn’t make it, don’t worry, there will be a round two mamasita.
From what I remember, we were talking steam mops (don’t ask) *cough April* and then randomly switched to a round table discussion on the best chocolate ice cream in town. Each of us had a strong favourite – a few Ben & Jerry, Connoisseur and Movenpick voters. With our creative minds put together, we formed Voltron. I wish. But, we had the next best thing -a Chocolate Ice Cream Battle which was perfect considering I haven’t done a in yonkers it was screaming neglect!
There were two rules:
1. Bring along a tub of yo favourite chocolate ice cream
2. Though add-ons like choc chips were fine, the base must be chocolate.How ironic. My name on an ice cream tub.
Of course, we couldn’t just survive on ice cream, so I was initially aiming for a simple menu of pizzas and typical dude food but knowing I was expecting a house full of Food Bloggers who eat like they have worms LOL, I cranked up the volume and thought, why not do a Filipino BBQ?!! Gosh. With so many dishes running through my mind, I shortlisted a few of my favourite BBQ items and ranked them by complexity and cooking methods until I had a workable menu with a variety of meats. I didn’t want to cook everything on the grill considering its compact size. So I got in my go go mobile and headed to South Melbourne Market to buy a tonne of meat then to the partay shop for themed supplies including an ice cream shaped balloon which was way cool and lolly bags with ice cream flavoured candy.I LIKE ICE CREAM I LIKE ICE CREAM I LIKE ICE CREAM
Filipino BBQ Menu
Pandesal – native sweet bread rolls, good with a hefty amount of butter baked the day before
BBQ Pork Skewers – marinated in Filipino goodness for 2 days then charred to perfection on the grill
Chicken Tocino Wings – cured overnight then blasted in the oven
No bake, No marinade Twice Cooked Cola + Tamarind Spicy Pork Ribs – recipe here
Lolly Bags! It had to be done. I got a variety of ice cream themed and retro candy and piggy tattoos.
The Chocolate Ice Cream Battle begins…
As the mains started to dissipate, we moved indoors for the judging. I actually bought a blindfold as I went OOC in the party supply shop and bought everything I thought was dope. I seriously envisioned us literally blind tasting each ice cream brand, giving it a rating and deciding on the best. It would have been hilarious to see! But of course, sometimes my imagination belongs in another era.. so whaaat! We opted instead, to get Josh, who kindly volunteered, to bring us a rounds of each ice cream at a time as we gave our ratings on the brand. OMG there were so many tubs of ice cream it took up my whole freezer!
It was good to see how different our tastes were. Some liked the darker, more bitter variety whilst others liked a sweeter milk chocolate flavour. One thing is for sure. Despite us thinking we knew our ice cream brands, there were a few surprises I tell you.
Below is how I would have predicted they would have ranked according to my tastes. But of course, the results proved otherwise.
Verdict: 50.5 out of 60
As soon as I had my first spoonful, I knew it was Ben and Jerry’s for sure. I mean, who else in the market has that much brownie chunks plus they have quite a distinct taste to their brand. I had my first B & J’s in New York five years ago and dreamed that one day they would come downunder and bam, they did! In fact, their first scoop shop just opened up in Melbourne a few weeks back in South Yarra along ‘doof doof’ Chapel Street. So close to work too!
Yes, this won all of us over but come on, they certainly had the clear advantage with all that chewy chunky goodness amongst that closer to dark chocolate creamy base. You want your kid/partner to sit and behave, give them a tub of this and they’ll even clean after themselves.
#2 Gundowring Chocolate
Verdict: 49 out of 60
I recall this being quite different texture wise compared to the others. It didn’t come across as melted/runny or anything but reminded us of a light chocolate mousse. I actually liked it but was initially thrown off. After the guys left and having a few more hours in the freezer, I tried it again. Funnily enough, despite the texture hardening back to standard ice cream form, I f0und myself craving the previous softer texture!
#3 Kohu Road Dark Chocolate
Verdict: 45.5 out of 60
I bought this one from the local IGA. I hadn’t seen Kohu in the freezer isle before so it made for the perfect choice. Packaged as dark chocolate, it definitely lived up to its name. It had a hard texture so each mouthful had to do the twist around the tongue but remained smooth throughout with no annoying icy bits. It was also quite sharp and wasn’t as sweet so the dark chocolate was able to just cut right through and state its presence. Great quality from NZ!
4th: Connoisseur Belgian Chocolate
Verdict: 45 out of 60
The Connoisseur was our dark horse – I’m pretty sure it was the cheapest tub and since it only just inched into fourth, it represented the best value. It scored and was fairly smooth and bitter sweet dark.
5th: NZ Natural Chocolate Ecstasy
Verdict: 34 out of 60
Usually a fan of the brand, this was the first time I tried their chocolate variety. I usually stick to their creamy vanilla and hokey pokey. It may have been a bad batch but it was icey and not as creamy as the others. It also didn’t have that indulgent chocolate flavour you want when you grab a spoon and dig into a tub of choccie ice cream on the couch wah. I would have loved to see this score in the top 3.
Verdict: 33 out of 60
This was the real shocker! The shockers of shockers. Believe it or not, more shocking than my table manners. It may have been due to the amount of dark chocolate ice cream consumed, but for some out of this world reason, none of us recognized it. For someone who forks out the premium ‘dollar dollar bills’ this brand demands at the supermarket, I was expecting it to score the highest so I had it again later that night and was in love with my beloved once again. Phew…
To conclude the judging, we all went bizerk and added chunks of April’s addictive chocolate peanut butter brownies to the other varieties. The best combination ever of salty and sweet and then worked off some of that sugar with a few rounds of fake tennis and archery (PS3 Move).
I started writing this post days after the party, then got distracted by other life happenings which included going back and forth to the freezer as I finally dusted off the remaining tubs of endless chocolate ice cream.
The Verdict! DUN DUN DUN….