Posts tagged hans and rene
A Game of Cones: Winter Finally Came

Going into Game of Thrones, I’m not sure what I expected. I’d previously glimpsed a few scenes while visiting my friend Lawrence but the series never really stuck. If I remember correctly, the first scene I ever watched was the beheading of Ned Stark and I was beyond shook! What a way to begin!

Sometime during my third year in university, I decided to give Game of Thrones a try. Everyone around me seemed to be watching the series at the time and curiosity had finally gotten the better of me. I wanted to understand why people were calling themselves Khaleesi’s, why the whole world seemed to have a fit when this dude named Jon Snow died and why the phrase ‘winter is coming’ meant so much to people. I mean, winter would come inadvertently right? It’s a season and they come every now and then. Oh, I was so naïve.

Game of Thrones broke my neck. I’d been told it was a whirlwind of a series – and frankly speaking, I’d seen the beheading of a character previously – but I did not expect up to half of what I was beholding. It’s a story so masterfully written, full of wicked twists and turns, sprinkled with politics, fantasy and best of all, vengeance. I wish someone had told me not to pick a favourite character!

As season 7 drew to a close, a little bird whispered to me. This bird did not have good news. I had just found out I would have to wait two years to watch the season finale of the series. I wanted to fight. Two full years? Do you know how much can change in two years? I could finally join the Fit Fam, I could decide to go Buddhist again or I could even be dead in that time. Not to be dramatic or anything but even worse still, I could be married! The years – as expected – flew by and when Game of Thrones returned to prime time television, I was beyond ecstatic.

The return of Game of Thrones to television sparked a movement for many commercial scale businesses. Almost everywhere you look, you’re sure to find something that’s on theme or inspired by the series.

Game of Thrones Mountain Dew? Yes

Game of Thrones Oreos? Yup, we got that too

White Walker by Johnnie Walker? Most definitely

Lagos got in on the Game of Merch action too Hans & Rene had a selection of Game of Thrones themed treats, it was too good an opportunity to pass up. I immediately knew I had to swing by. Winter was finally here and it clearly came for my taste buds. Take a look:  

 

Petyr Baelish

Petyr Baelish – or Littlefinger as he was commonly called – has to be the craftiest man in the seven kingdoms. Creating a flavour to capture the diverse personas Lord Baelish portrays is no easy feat.

Petyr Baelish is a berry salted butter caramel. The combination of these flavours is true to who Lord Baelish was. Sweet in words, salty in actions and ready to butter you up for the slaughter.

Personally, I don’t enjoy caramel but the unique blend of sweet and salty gave the treat an unexpected kick.

 

Ser Brienne of Tarth

A blond chocolate gelato for our blond knight. Ser Brienne of Tarth is a blond chocolate gelato infused with intense biscuit flavours and caramelised milk. Akin to the series, Ser Brienne of Tarth is Hans and Rene’s first ever blond chocolate gelato. Three cheers for Brienne, the bringer of beginnings!

I enjoyed many things about this flavour but my favourite thing would have to be the texture. I absolutely love how creamy gelatos are. It had a thickness that wasn’t overwhelming. Its sweetness was delicate and enjoyable.

 

Cersei

Putting a flavour to Cersei must’ve posed a challenge for Hans and Rene. How do you create a sweet treat inspired by pure evil? The connoisseurs of the sweet life did not disappoint with Cersei.

Cersei is a mint ice cream decorated with shards of chocolate. If you ask me, the mint ice cream is the real evil here.

Mint ice cream is a bit of an acquired taste for me. The sharp taste of the mint was balanced out by the sweetness offered by the chocolate. It didn’t taste like sweetened toothpaste – like some mint flavours I’ve come across in the past. Honestly, I could say I enjoyed it just a little.

 

Lord Varys

I love Lord Varys. Varys is easily one of my favourite characters from the series. He has all the tea in Westeros and beyond and is truly dedicated to the good of the realm. What’s not to love? This flavour, that’s what.

Lord Varys is a banana gelato with layers of banana bread topped with caramel. I’m very sure this flavour would have been a hit if it could pass my throat. On my list of forbidden fruits, bananas have to be top 3. It’s one of those things I wouldn’t put in my mouth no matter the circumstance. They make me sick. Literally.

I’m particularly sad because this treat was created after a character I love and now, I’ll never be able to know what it tastes like. Tears.

 

Tyrion Lannister

The Lannisters love their wine. It’s no surprise that a flavour fashioned after our beloved Tyrion infuses the biggest part of Lannister culture in the seven kingdoms.

Tyrion Lannister is a Zobo Sorbet infused with red wine and cherries. Simply put, this flavour was divine. Red wine and sweet treats aren’t something which would usually come to mind. The balance between the sweet sorbet, slight tang of the cherries and red wine created an exotic blend of flavours.

In my opinion, this flavour should sit on the iron throne.

 

Daenerys Targaryen

Daenerys Targaryen is a fior de latte infused with pistachio and raspberry. ‘Fior di latte’ means ‘flower of milk’ or ‘milk flower’ as the case may be. It’s the purest form of gelato possible – all cream, no flavours or additives. Just sweetened pure cream.

The mother of dragons kept it sweet with the pistachios but packed a punch with the raspberries. Creating that balance between both flavours kept true to Daenerys’s nature. She’ll break your chains but she could burn you alive, you know.

Between its texture and sweetness, I’m still undecided on what I love best about this flavour. It’s lit.

 

The Night King

I’d come across the Night King at GT Food and Drink when I reviewed some sweet treats. The Night King is hands down one of the best flavours inspired by the series.

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The Night King is a fior di latte gelato – just like Daenerys Targaryen. The Night King kept it sweet and smooth with its cloud like texture. If this is what the actual Night King was bringing to Westeros, I don’t think there would’ve been a war.

Because Jesus Loves Us, Hans & Rene Just Launched Their Gelato Delivery Service

Easily the most exciting news today, Hans & Rene got an app. Even more important, H&R got delivery (VI/Ikoyi, for now). Super quick delivery if you’re in the delivery radius too.

There’s a serious conversation to be had about disruption and Ice Cream Factory, but I’m a bit too excited to think.

The app is on Android and iOS (the rest of you are razz and don’t deserve this goodness, jk jk). When you download the app, you input some basic, but super important info.

Ordering is pretty intuitive. To start, you select the category of deliciousness you want. I went with gelato because I wasn’t thinking too straight because of excitement. You select your flavour, number of scoops, and most importantly, you pay.

Yup, you pay within the app. Shouts to the guys at Paystack.

And the best part of all of this, I got my gelato in < 10 minutes.

EDL Taste Test: Chocolat Royale vs. Hans & Rene

PRICE

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FOLLY: Hans & René's glazed donut is N500 while Chocolat Royal's is N300. Both are pretty expensive for a piece of fried dough according to my wallet. 

NOSA: Mr. Biggs' is like N200 so I think this is fair tbh. Hans & René might be a little too much, however.

 

TASTE & TEXTURE

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FOLLY: Both are overwhelmingly thick, dense and doughy. The Hans & René donut is only slightly lighter than the Chocolat Royale one.

NOSA: The Chocolat Royale one had this "salty" thing to it. You know when you have too much baking soda in a baked item? Yeah, that taste.

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FOLLY: Also, I should point out that we bought both donuts at about 4pm on a weekday afternoon and neither donut tasted particularly fresh.

NOSA: I'll chalk this one down to Nigerian factor. It is what it is, I guess. 

 

GLAZE

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FOLLY: Chocolat Royale's glaze was more consistent while Hans & René's was flakier but I think that's a storage issue for Hans & René. 

NOSA: You know something funny? I thought this would be the other way round before we bought both donuts. Thanks for surprising me, Chocolat Royale.

 

VERDICT

FOLLY: Chocolat Royale because there's no significant quality jump between the Hans & René one that justifies the additional N200. 

NOSA; Yeah, as far as I'm concerned, these two donuts are the same. Well, if you ignore the baking soda situation. Even at that, the N200 jump is not justified.

Chocolat Royale vs Hans & Rene
Chocolat Royale
Hans & Rene
Sage Quotes
EDL Weekender: It's International Picnic Day This Weekend

EAT: Gelato With Friends

FOLLY: Check out our interview with the owner of Hans & René, then shimmy on down to ICM, The Palms or Radisson Blu to share gelato with friends and be adorable. 

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NOSA: No, we're not on Hans & René's payroll. Stop asking.

DRINK: Mango Margaritas

FOLLY: Now this one isn't Nosa's cup of tea because he hates fruits but mangoes are in season, so why not make margaritas of them. I had this one at NOK but Casa Lydia and La Provence also make them.

NOSA: If you don't like Mangoes, you should probably stay away from these because they're very mango-y.

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LAGOS: International Picnic Day

FOLLY: I'm hesitant to share this because I'm afraid of it getting too mainstream. It is one of my favorite things to do in Lagos, so I'll share it with y'all. 

NOSA: This is a very alté rocks. Like, the alté-est of the alté.

Pro tip: Bring a lawn chair 

One Year In: How did The Hans & René Gelateria Get Here

Our love for Hans & René is a bit of an open secret at this point. Everything about the brand is extremely well done, and no matter what side of the fence you sit on regarding Hans & René, you have to admit they are insanely creative. Evident from their masterful use of Instagram to the actual gelato flavors in the store. Hans & René has gone from little cupcake service with a blog to one of Lagos' favorite dessert spots with 3 branches.

There are a few burning questions we've always wanted to ask Tayo Bolodeoku (who is fondly referred to as Mrs. B), the creative director of Hans & René, and we finally got a chance to shoot our questions her way.


Hans & René used to be just cakes, what prompted you to make the jump to full blown gelateria?

I love food in general but I am a proper sweet tooth. I had always dreamt about having a sweet shop with ice cream, so from the very first day I baked, ice cream was always on my mind.

I decided that if I was going to do it and do it well I had to learn from the very best. Who makes the best cold creams? Italians. Off I went to school in Italy; not to learn how to make ice cream but gelato.

Does it annoy you, even just a little, when people refer to your gelato as ice cream? And also why gelato and not ice cream?

No, it doesn’t annoy me, rather I see it as an opportunity to educate them on what they are having and why they are actually enjoying it so much.

There are many differences in how it's made, what temperature it's stored at, recipes etc but I will give you two basic facts about the difference between gelato and ice cream

  1. Less air churned into it
  2. Wayyy less fat

The results are a richer, creamier texture, no grainy icicles, it is denser with little to no fat to dull your senses when you taste it. A customer of ours said on Twitter “comparing Hans and René gelato to any other ice cream brand in Nigeria is like comparing a store bought chocolate brand to artisanal prepared Belgian chocolate”. It is head swelling and humbling at the same time that people are actually starting to get it.

We heard all H&R flavors are made custom for you. Like, you actually fly to Italy and determine how chocolatey you want your chocolate to be. Is that true?

That question made me chuckle, I wish it were so easy! 

I'm proudly Nigerian and that means my palette is wonderfully complex with all the food we eat....crayfish today, ogbono tomorrow, sheri mangoes, agbalumo etc. We also have our funny feeling about sugar and jedi jedi.

It is our recipe, custom made by us here in Lagos.

Before we opened, we worked extensively with Maestro’s and specialists in the gelato making world in Italy on the technical side of making the gelato.

We did this because as you know, we produce in-house daily and create new flavors on the fly. It was important to ensure that if we tweaked things a little bit that our work wouldn't fall apart.

With the help of my palate and expertise, we came up with our recipes. So to answer your question; There will never be a chocolate brownie gelato that tastes like a Hans and René Chocolate brownie gelato. It is our recipe, custom made by us here in Lagos. We learned the technicalities from the Italians but we refined the process with our own creativity. After all agbalumo, cashew fruit and zobo don’t grow in Italy.

Are there any plans to add savory items to Hans & René's offerings?

Watch this space closely......

Where's your favorite place to go when you need inspiration?

I draw inspiration from everything I see so I don’t have a particular place; however, I wake up at 3am every day and begin to download, research and write down all I have seen and don’t want to forget; that is my favorite time. The world is still and quiet and I can think.

Finish the following sentences

My favorite restaurant in Lagos is … Is it terrible that I don’t eat out much? I like to cook and eat at home with my family.

My all time favorite cupcake flavor is … Good old vanilla!

The best part of my job is … Experimenting in the lab and then seeing people enjoy what I've created makes me really happy.

If I wasn't doing this, I would be … A full-time mummy!

Jollof Rice or Amala … Amala. With gbegiri and ewedu...yes please!!!!


The third Hans & René After Dark is tonight (Saturday, June 4 2016). You should swing by and say hi to Mrs. B.

Ed Note: Hans & René gelateria is one, but they've been making cakes for six years.