at NY NY Mall
12, SongShou Rd
Corner of SongShou Rd. (松壽路) and SongZhi Rd. (松智路) near the "Statue of Liberty"
website: coldstonecreamery.com US site
hours: 11 am-10 pm
$$ (for ice cream)
Nothing beats the heat like a nice ice cream cone and in Taipei, the humidity comes earlier than most summers. That's why I predict Coldstone's will be around for quite awhile. It's got more variation than the established Haagen Daaz and though it's sweet, I feel like it's less heavy than Haagen Daaz as well. It's easier to find than the local Big Tom's chain and got more pizazz than Movenpick.
I heard about its opening through a friend's text message a few weeks ago and when I passed by it on a busy Sunday afternoon, there must have been at least 40 people in line. A little googling showed that the same company (PSCP) that operates McDs, Mister Donut and Starbucks here plans to open
While you're waiting in line, try and snag a copy of their menu which is full of pictures and ice cream w/ English and Chinese names like "Monkey Bites" or "Cookie Mintster", but the description is only in Chinese. You don't like their combos? You can also make up your own.
So if you want details on what is in the combos (or do your homework on the website), ask one of their servers who are taking the orders. Ours had quite good English, and the servers at the counter- not so much. I sampled a dark chocolate flavor ice cream and asked him what flavor it was, and he didn't know the English name.
One you've placed your order, one of the many servers will scoop up your ice cream, mix in your choice toppings on the cold slab on the counter, and then scoop it back into your cup or waffle. I got a medium Mud Pie (which came with coffee ice cream mixed with fudge, peanut butter and almonds) with a waffle cone to share with a friend (NT$160 + NT$20). It's definitley not cheap, but soften the blow by sharing with a friend or getting a single scoop with one mix in (NT$90).
There were at least seven servers behind the counter buzzing about so the line went fairly quickly and occasionally they would burst into song, which I've heard is their trademark in the states.
Pay, get your stuff, and then eat on the go, or try and get one of the very few tables inside, or slightly more tables outside. Or if you have a whole team of eaters, have someone else grab a table while you wait in line. We had to wait a little while for them to make our waffle cone and wait for it to cool so it didn't melt our ice cream creation. It was a little softer than I would have normally liked, but it was still sweet and coffee-chocolately goodness.
So if you've had your fill of Ice Monster mango ice, then head over to get some Coldstone. Go on a weekday and you might not even have to wait in line!
I wasn't sure if they had cakes, but how awesome would it be if they had Red Velvet cake in Taipei?? I would become a fat, but happy frequent customer.