First of all, I would just like to state that WordPress seems to have changed since the last time I was here. I can’t figure out how to resize the pictures, or link to URLs. So I’m pulling them to my desktop and uploading them? Whatever, technical blah blah. But it feels like WordPress is different every time I get around to blogging. Annoying. I hope it doesn’t look crappy. Know that I am powerless against the crappiness!
Anyway, I am here to tell you about Blockheads! The word “shavery” makes me feel weird (shaving… weird), so I’ll just stick to Blockheads. A while back (summer?), Whitney and I found this article about Taiwanese shaved ice and were planning on trekking around to try it out. But then… I don’t know, we live on the Eastside, and none of these places were close. And then it got cold outside.
Fast forward to yesterday. I’m visiting Cole on the Westside. I ask him if he happens to live near any of these fad-y shaved ice places, and he says — Yeah, I’m within walking distance of TWO different types of shave ice places. So we had to go. (Apologies to Whitney.) The first was a Hawaiian shave ice place, which is allegedly Great. But the second was Blockheads and the line was out the door, so I was like — not to be a lemming, but I want to try the zeitgeist-iest thing.
I could not figure out if Blockheads was dairy or non-dairy, and we decided to just go with it and let my stomach be the judge. (Not always a good idea, but HEY, gotta live a little.) I ended up feeling fine, but later that night I did some more googling and realized it’s made with reduced fat milk. But it’s very light, so… I don’t know, be aware, but don’t necessarily be deterred. For me, cream is the real problem ingredient. But if you’re seriously lactose intolerant and you visit this neighborhood, the Hawaiian place is a better bet. (Unless you add Dole whip. Then all bets are off.)
Here is an article about how the two shave ice places are having a war! Honestly, Cole is the luckiest guy in the world because if I lived within walking distance of these places I’d probably have one for morning snack and the other for evening snack. I’m a Hobbit. And shave ice is amazing.
So we stood in line at Blockheads, which gave us plenty of time to observe le menu.
Because it was crowded and they didn’t seem to have samples, you just had to go with your gut. My gut doesn’t know what grass jelly tastes like, so I kept my order fairly simple. Green tea, mango puree drizzle, strawberries, graham cracker. Cole got a similar order, so I kinda copied him. (BTW, he informs me that black sesame tastes like peanut butter.)
We stood waiting for a while after we ordered, which allowed me to watch a lot of orders process through. People seem to love lychees and what I believe was honey boba. (It looked a lot like the lychees, oddly enough. Very eyeball-y.)
(I once read a short story about a play where lychees were used to double as King Lear’s stomped-out eyeballs, so I’m kinda leery of them.)
Here is a block being shaved.
The last thing they do before serving your order is drizzle your puree of choice on it. For a lot of people it’s condensed milk. For Cole it was coconut puree. These teens were standing behind us as Cole’s order was prepared, and one of them (a guy) was going, “Oh yeah, this is a good one, I’m into these toppings.” (I don’t know, teens are weird.) Then, the coconut puree was added. And the kid was not pleased with the addition of white goo. It was quite amusing. Teens! Bodies! Shaveries!
I really love green tea ice cream (especially at Benihana… that frozen bowl), so I enjoyed this very much. The light, almost fluffy nature of the shaved “snow cream” was very appealing, as was the sweetness of the drizzle of puree. This is a sometimes snack for a lactose-wary person, especially because it’s on the Westside, but I would definitely go back. I enjoyed the whole experience of watching all the orders being filled with the unconventional (to my Western eye) toppings. I don’t mind waiting, when I’m in no rush. (And when I’m talking with Cole/eavesdropping on funny teens.)
I wouldn’t be surprised if this is the next Pinkberry-esque trend, though I know nothing of plans to expand. With lines out the door, I could see it happening.
But next time, I will try the Hawaiian shave ice place. (Insert “hang loose” hand symbol.)
After you eat your ice-whatever, you can walk north a half-block or so and check out the novelty shops. In a gallery called GR2 (Giant Robot 2), I found what might be my spirit animal — a snake made of macarons. Hey — it could happen. (No… it probably couldn’t.)
Happy Year of the Snake!
Also, if in the future my Flickr explodes — this post will maintain its photos, because I had to upload them from my desktop. So… I can sleep better at night, re: THIS ONE POST.