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VANCOUVER, WA – This isn’t your Grandpa’s ice cream shop. In fact, the newly-opened Flash Freeze Dreamery offers much more than ice cream in a very sleek, modern, entertaining venue that’ll be a hit with your taste buds.
The shop, located at Lacamas Crossing (Costco shopping complex at 192nd Avenue and First), is based on the concept of liquid nitrogen ice cream.
So, what does that mean?
“The creamy part of the ice cream with flavor is put into a mixer and we zap it with liquid nitrogen, which is super cold,” says Flash Freeze Dreamery owner and concept designer, Gabe Ohms. “It’s mixed and the nitrogen evaporates out of the bowl while it freezes the ice cream.”
The nitrogen evaporates into the air leaving the ice cream “flash frozen” – and delicious.
“Generally ice cream that’s been purchased has typically been sitting there for days, and it’s the same with frozen yogurt,” Ohms adds. “What we’ve done here is taken fresh cream (from Alpenrose Dairy), added some flavor, and within a minute or two we create the freshest ice cream. Our product has the smoothest texture.”
Flash Freeze does this with French custard, Italian gelato, and frozen yogurt. They also have non-dairy options available.
So, how does it work?
When you go to Flash Freeze, and trust me, you want to GO to Flash Freeze, you first select your size of treat (small, medium, large), select your base (ice cream, French custard, Italian gelato, frozen yogurt, etc.), and then choose your flavor.
Customers can choose from a “favorite” flavor combination from the menu, or pick a flavor that’s available. You can also “dream” your own.
It’s really a lot of fun, and incredibly delicious.
Once you order, Flash Freeze staff get right to work, and it’s fun to watch. They first add the cream and flavor combination (based on recipes crafted by Ohms), then it’s off to the Kitchen Aid mixers that are retrofitted with dosers, which are connected to massive liquid nitrogen tanks. The custom-made doser valves control the flow of the liquid nitrogen.
Workers mix the ingredients to perfection, and then place the mixer bowl into water to separate the ice cream from the bowl. The fresh product is then placed into a bowl and served fresh.
|Ordering is as simple as 1-2-3.|
|Teal Fielding serves a finished dessert.|
On Thursday, Fuel Medical, a locally-owned and operated company, met at the Camas Fire station on Parker Avenue and did their part in making a child’s Christmas wish come true.
“We’re thankful for Fuel Medical, for the purchase and donation of these bikes,” she added. “It’s great to have the help.”
Ramsey said their next task was organizing the delivery boxes in preparation for this weekend.
|Fuel Medical team members complete a bike on Thursday.|
|Fuel Medical finished their bike assemblies Thursday morning and donated the bikes to the CAROL program.|
By Seth Sjostrom
Today’s economy is tough. That’s no secret. We all find ways to cinch the purse strings and do more with less. But are we doing the most with the dollars that we spend within our communities? One local organization has been created to answer that question.
Buy Vancouver is a collective of small, independent businesses that strives to educate the buying public that where and how they spend their dollars impacts their very community and local economy. The group’s premise is three-fold: locally-owned, independent businesses contribute to the unique character of the community; for every $100 spent, $45 spent with a local business remains in the community versus $15 spent at a chain; local, independent businesses create higher-paying jobs.
Mary Sisson, owner of Vancouver-based Kazoodles toy store and founder of Buy Vancouver firmly believes in the organization’s stance, “I have been promoting ‘shop local’ since we opened in 2006.” Mary developed great depth of experience in cultivating independent businesses through editing the ASTRA (American Specialty Toy Retailing Association) national newsletter. Pulling together similarly minded business owners like Paper Tiger Coffee Roaster’s Kenny and Sue Fletcher and Vintage Books’ Becky Millner, Buy Vancouver was born.
“Our goal is to raise awareness among local buyers that where they shop makes a difference in their community,” Mary states. Many buyers prefer to buy American when they have the choice; in fact, they are often open to paying a premium for to do so. The same goes for supporting local shop owners, but buyers have to be aware of their options.
Early manifestations include a group effort in a coupon exchange where several businesses hand out the coupons of other local businesses. To further make connections in the minds of Vancouver shoppers, 21 businesses took part in a “Where’s Waldo” scavenger hunt. Each participating store had a hidden Waldo that children and families could seek out in celebration of Where’s Waldo’s 25thanniversary. Those who submitted entries with a least 16 Waldos found were eligible for a drawing where the winner would receive the complete collection of the famous seek and find books. While not technically a Buy Vancouver event, it represented what the group of businesses could accomplish together.
Buy Vancouver has begun to take shape with fifteen official current members, with more adding on each week. Any Vancouver business that is locally owned, independent to the point where “they could change their name if they wanted to without running it up the corporate chain”, and is not publicly traded is eligible for membership. A mere $25 fee used to cover marketing costs is the only dues demanded.
Buy Vancouver is looking towards the near term future, sponsoring a booth at Vancouver’s Peace and Justice Fair, September 8th. The booth represents their first public forum to espouse their call buy local message. Kenny Fletcher is impressed with the collaborative effort of the businesses involved so far, “Some groups can tend to be a bit passive. All of the members of Buy Vancouver are very active in the organization, each of us taking on a needed area. Even at the Peace and Justice booth, we are all ready to be involved. We will be bringing coffee for the booth’s staffers, at the very least.”
Beyond the Peace and Justice Fair, the group is in full growth mode, feeling membership is ready to explode as their early efforts are recognized. Putting together a comprehensive list of local independent businesses with a corresponding guide is on the docket for the immediate future as is increasing their presence in the community. A pair of related goals includes supporting calls for tax fairness for online merchants and for manufacturers to enforce minimum pricing – both things issues negatively impacting local independent businesses.
As you are wandering around Vancouver or in town for a shopping trip, take note of the circulating salmon sign in the window of local merchants denoting they are an independent purveyor and member of Buy Vancouver. As Vancouver’s neighbors struggle with the same challenges, there are surely lessons to be gleamed from banding together to support local independent businesses, the building blocks of the American dream.