Best in Lagos: What's the Best Vanilla Ice Cream in Lagos?
I’m having way too much fun with these national food holidays and this time, it’s national vanilla ice cream day! Who doesn’t like ice cream? I know even a few lactose intolerant people (myself included) who throw caution to the wind and indulge to the detriment of their (our) digestive systems.
Vanilla is one of the most popular flavors to ever exist, and it is used in many different ways and ice cream is undoubtedly one of my favorites. In honor of vanilla ice cream day, I tried the ice cream (vanilla obviously) at some of the most popular ice cream spots in Lagos.
Well, apart from Coldstone.
Who? Hans and Rene
What? Vegan vanilla: N1k/scoop; Chocolate chip cookie: N700
The different flavors of sorbet caught my eye as soon as I walked in. It was all very colorful and looked amazing. They even had this Lion King special, which was adorable. I wanted to try it all, but I did not lose focus. When I saw the vegan vanilla, my curiosity whispered that I had to try that. I wasn’t even aware that there was such a thing as vegan vanilla gelato, but it does make sense. Being vegan does not mean you shouldn't be able to enjoy one of life’s greatest gifts: ice cream. The key difference between vegan vanilla and regular vanilla is that vegan contains no sugar.
So, obviously, I had the vegan vanilla. Unfortunately, there were no toppings available. In retrospect, toppings might have ruined the very peculiar flavor of the ice cream.
The vanilla flavor was distinct, quite pronounced and it was sweet, the way ice cream should be but it wasn’t cloying in the way a lot of vanilla ice cream can be. It was, for lack of a better word; delicious. The texture was smooth, melting in your mouth, not like cotton candy, but like heavy cream. Satisfying. The cookie was an excellent complement, perfect together like Michelle and Barack.
A solid 8/10, but this is technically gelato so does it really count?
Who? Maison Kayser
What? Vanilla ice cream: N800/scoop; Whipped cream: N500
Eric Kayser opened late last year to the delight of those who know or have heard of the popular French franchise. They have a super cute space in VI, light and airy with skylights and stuff. It was a little too crowded for me, but any space with more than two people is crowded to me, the introvert. Anyway, I had the vanilla gelato along with whipped cream and caramel sauce. I’m not a big fan of caramel but it complemented the whipped cream, which complemented ice cream. These elements overwhelmed the vanilla and it became more of an aftertaste rather than the main flavor. It was not as rich either. The vanilla flavor was not quite as distinct as that of the vegan ice cream despite being a little sweeter due to the presence of fructose. The presentation was also pretty, so bonus points for that.
Who? Chocolat Royal
What? Flower cone: N250; Vanilla ice cream scoop: N450; Topping (Maltesers): N250
Can start with telling you how much I love Chocolat Royale? They have the cutest pastry that tastes just as delicious as they look. The vanilla ice cream though? Disastrous. I’m specific about the vanilla ice cream because I tasted the orange ice cream and I quite liked it. So I was really confused and so disappointed when I had the first taste of their vanilla ice cream and it was almost synthetic. The Maltesers did not taste even remotely like Maltesers, and the flower cone wasn’t any better. The ice cream was too sweet, with barely any vanilla flavor, in fact, it had no flavor. It also had this awful aftertaste. I had to get a beef samosa as a palate cleanser. If you absolutely must get vanilla ice cream from Chocolat Royale, please do yourself a favor and get anything but the vanilla.
0/10, would not recommend.
Who? Ice Cream Factory
What? One scoop of Madagascan vanilla: N600; Caramelised hazelnuts: N300; double chocolate chip muffin: N600
Ice Cream Factory has my heart forever! I’m not even kidding. This was a euphoric experience for me and my tastebuds. The Madagascan vanilla has a slightly different flavor from regular vanilla. It has a very creamy, almost cheesy, flavor and the hazelnuts gave the ice cream texture because they had a crunch to them. Also, the caramelized hazelnuts added some sweetness to it. The taste reminded me a little of groundnuts, perfectly complemented the ice cream and so it wasn’t cloying. The double-chocolate chip muffin which was so rich, crisp on the edges, warm and moist inside, as any self-respecting muffin should. Ok, maybe it was all a little too sweet when combined with the muffin.
A very good 9/10.
Who? Frozen Rolls
What? Creamy Monster
This place is behind a mall in Lekki and the decor is cute, with pop-art murals on the walls. There are no singular flavors at Frozen Rolls, only a combination of many different elements so I wasn’t able to get vanilla ice cream alone. I decided to have something called the Creamy Monster, which was a combination of sweet cream cookies, cream butter and Oreo mix-in, and Oreo crumbs with caramel sauce. The rolls came and were topped with a whole Oreo cookie. This would have worked better if the Oreo was crumbled on the whole thing.
It tasted mostly like milo honestly, but I like milo so it worked for me. It was really sweet though and so it got cloying at a point. The name ‘frozen rolls’ is apt though it was super cold, and they had this adorable plastic spoon that’s sensitive to temperature and changes color when dipped in the ice cream. I’ll give this a 6 as well because It became overwhelmingly sweet at a point.
All in all, it was a pretty fun experience, except for the fact that I was ready to collapse from too much sugar the end of the day. And that’s how you know you’re getting old when you get to a place in life where there’s such a thing as too much ice cream.