Because L.A. just won’t settle for boring scooped ice cream, rolled ice cream is now in available in Koreatown. Rolled ice cream appeared in Thailand as a popular street food and made its way throughout Southeast Asia. It reached trend status when it came to New York in 2015. After that, it popped up in the suburbs (Rowland Heights, Sherman Oaks, Monterey Park, and Gardena) but nowhere in L.A. proper until now.
Koreatown’s new and only rolled ice cream shop, Holy Roly (3450 W. 6th St), just had its grand opening. Since its soft open in late March, it has already attracted throngs of customers. Its location is tucked away in an unassuming strip mall, and if you can’t find the place, look for the nondescript sign that simply reads “ice cream.” Despite the modest signage and lack of advertising (they have a scant seven Instagram posts at the time of writing), hungry foodies have descended upon Holy Roly, and the line is sometimes out the door.
The method of rolling not only looks cool, but it also creates a silky smooth texture. They start by pouring the base onto a freezing surface, much like an anti-griddle. The base and other ingredients are mashed together and mixed up. Then the mixture is flattened out onto the freezing surface and scraped off in rolls. The whole process takes a few minutes. While you wait for your order, you can watch the rolling artists at work as they create.
All the rolled ice cream at Holy Roly is made to order. The base is made in-house using fresh organic ingredients and no chemical stabilizers or preservatives. In addition to the rolls of ice cream, Holy Roly has a variety of random toppings to add to the spectacle.