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A Morning Visit To Cold Gold Ice Cream HQ

A morning visit to Cold Gold Ice Cream HQ

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We have found the proverbial pot of gold at the end of the rainbow… It is icy cold and, boy, does it taste good!  Why are we so excited to share our latest find and why on earth is it family-friendly? Because Cold Gold ice cream contains no chemicals, preservatives, artificial flavourings, artificial colourings or stabilizers. Plus, if you want it dairy-free, vegan or banting-style you can get your ice cream and eat it too!! Sounds too good to be true?

When I first heard about Cold Gold Ice Cream I just knew it was one of those products that I had to go check out (poor me, right? 😉 ).

Early Thursday morning I set out to the Cold Gold HQ at Bosman’s Crossing in Stellenbosch to meet the owner, Janine.  The most important question I had on my mind while I was running five minutes late, was: Just how good does the Valrhona chocolate ice cream taste?

Janine van Zyl started Cold Gold three years ago when she opened up shop in Bosman’s Crossing, Stellenbosch, to be close to her suppliers. All the ingredients that go into Cold Gold ice cream are organic and sourced locally (apart from the Valrhona chocolate imported for the chocolate ice cream). Before becoming an artisan ice cream fundi she worked as a qualified chef.  Born in Pretoria, she grew up in Windhoek, after school studied at Prue Leith Chefs Academy in Pretoria, then worked in Cape Town at the Mount Nelson and Twelve Apostles, all before opening the Cold Gold Ice Cream shop in Stellenbosch.

Janine is very hands-on when it comes to managing her own business.  Together with Phumla, her do-it-all sidekick, she does everything herself: from production of the ice cream right through to marketing and sales.  Cold Gold has a no-wastage policy and nothing in the kitchen goes to waste. The pulp from the nut milk, for example, is turned into banting biscuits which are also for sale in the shop.

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I sat down with Janine and asked her some questions about her pots of gold:

What does a typical work day look like?

Janine gets up at two AM to start making her beloved ice creams.  When the day breaks she is awake and ready to serve customers at the shop.  Afternoons usually consist of meetings which basically leaves the evenings for business admin.

How does she do it?

She says its real simple to put everything you’ve got into something when it means that you are living out your passion.

Best-selling flavours of ice cream?

Chocolate and Vanilla. The banting ice creams are also fast-sellers these days.

Weirdest flavour you ever came up with?

Blue cheese and honey & blue cheese and figs (Apparently customers loved it and it flew off the shelf).

“Healthiest” ice creams you sell? (Lowest in fat/ sugar)

It has to be the sorbet that contains almost no sugar (usually around 1 %) and is jam-packed with real fruit. Some flavours like the tropical sorbet made with, among other things, real watermelon and sweet melon have a zero sugar content (apart from the sugar in the fruit itself).

If someone has a specific request, will you create an ice cream according to that person’s requirements?

Yes, the minimum amount that is produced is 4 liters so if a person wants a particular flavour he/ she will have to buy all 4 liters unless Janine thinks her customers will buy the flavour from the shop.  She says that by now she’s developed a feel for which flavours will sell and which ones won’t.

Do you do deliveries?

No, but Janine invites all parents to come and visit her shop in Bosman’s Crossing. No child-friendly amenities but the children can run around in the court-yard and I’ve heard that Phumla is great with children 🙂

Cold Gold also hires out scoop freezers for parties and events.

Where else may people find Cold Gold ice cream?

Cold Gold is a regular vendor at markets like the Blaauwklippen Market. Some restaurants serve Cold Gold ice cream as part of its dessert menu items such as the newly opened Bistro13. A complete list of outlets can be found on the Cold Gold website.

At the end of the meeting I had one lingering question, but I HAD to know, so I asked it anyway…

If I may, how old are you?

She laughed and said “twenty-three”.

Now, I have the hope of raising my kids to one day at the age of twenty-three sit across from a total stranger and with confidence tell that person that they run their own business that is now three years old. Not only that but it’s also the only business producing banting ice cream in South Africa. I will not lie. I will be very proud of them.

On behalf of Stellenbosch, we are proud of you, Janine, and we wish you and Cold Gold all the best!

More info on the Cold Gold Website.

Oh, and by the way…

My top five flavours:

  1. Valrhona chocolate ice cream (heavenly!)
  2. Banting milk tart ice cream
  3. Coffee and roasted coconut biscuits ice cream
  4. Strawberry ice cream (which tastes like real strawberries)
  5. Tropical sorbet
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