Strength: Convenient location. Good hangout seating.
Weakness: Desserts are quite rough
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Icy Bar has been around for at least a decade. Many franchise locations have opened recently. There are about 4 stores right now. I came here because I saw Mango Charming having the same Chinese name. So I’m here to do a comparison to see which one is better. This Icy Bar is the location on Kingsway, near Boundary.
I started to have a bad feeling about this place when I saw “Taiwanese Shaved Icy” written in simplified Chinese character. I question the authenticity of this dessert place, and wasn’t sure what kind of restaurant I am walking into.
The interiors are painted off-green to their logo on the outside. This is quite a neutral color, the space feels visually cool. With the air conditioning cranked up high, the interior actually feels cold. There is a lot of people here. The majority of them are the younger crowd. There is a water station near the front counter if your dessert makes you thirsty. They also provide free Wi-Fi for patrons.
Customers Control Their Dessert’s Sweetness
After ordering, the first thing that came to our table is the squeeze bottle of the condensed milk. I have mixed feeling about this. One way, I get to adjust my own sweetness level. However, this can be seen as a lazy way out.
Mango Sago Pomelo Dessert Was Cheaply Put Together
Mango Sago Pomelo Dessert was not authentic. It is overly sweetened. Sago was overcooked and soggy. There is no point of biting it. Pomelo pulps should have been separated, but we got a few sliced chunks. The Pomelo is also the wrong kind. It’s not supposed to be red. It feels like this entire bowl is cheaply put together without any care. Desserts should be more delicate.
The Mango Icy Lack Mango Topping
There was mango only on the top layer. The above picture shows the side with the most mango. Halfway through the dessert, there was no more topping. I had to use condensed milk as the topping. There are a few mysterious black dots in the bowl. I can’t figure out which part of the mango those black dots come from.
Poor Quality Shaved Ice
Mango topping and mango jams are only on the very top layer. Dig down 2 inches, and all you get is ice. The ice is a bit yellow because of the mango jam used. As I dug deeper, I can feel the ice getting more compact. Unlike the fluffy shaved ice at Mango Charming, there is no hint of any fluffiness to the shaved ice in Icy Bar.
Small Ice Cubes Are Hard On The Teeth
The ice were not finely shaved. They are very dense, kind of like the 2 day old snow on the side walk that has been melted and refrozen. The “shaved ice” does not deserve to be called “shaved ice”. It is very sharp and very hard that it hurts my teeth when I bite into them. I think it’s better suited to be called small ice-cubes. Low quality shaved ice cost about $2 in Asia, and people would only order it if they are desperate.
Small Ice Cubes Re-Freeze Into One Large Ice Cube
604 Food Critic Assessment
There is a type of Cantonese restaurants where they serve all kinds of cuisine. First, you see congee, noodle, and BBQ duck meal, the typical Cantonese food, nothing out of the ordinary. Then you start to see the New Zealand rack of lamb and New York sirloin steak with lobster tail. Next page you see Japanese sushi, ramen and curry rice. If you got curious and ordered the sushi, you’ll find out what Chinese infused sushi taste like. Or a bowl of Chiense noodle soup with miso added that is being called “ramen”. Icy Bar dessert shop is like that kind of patchwork restaurants in the dessert world. They have a large variety of items on their menu, but everything tastes the same, nothing is authentic. This place is not worth my time or money.
My $9 bowl dessert is too expensive for this low-quality Mango Icy. This is the worst mango icy I have had in Vancouver. On second thought, this is the worst mango icy I have had in the entire world.