Long Island City ice cream shop relies on community

July 23, 2012 3:13:47 PM PDT
At your local shop, you should be able to get what you want.

Sergio Garcia and his wife Jennifer Dudek really mean that - so much so that their customers have a huge role in choosing the flavors of ice cream at Malu.

Dudek believes that behind every ice cream there's a story.

The couple opened their ice cream shop one year ago in Long Island City, and they've come to depend on their community.

"I'm not a chef, I'm a banker - we've opened up a suggestion box for flavors, and it's worked," said Garcia.

For example, the local florist, Juan Carlo Bermudas inspired the lavender mascarpone flavor. Bermudas even trades flowers for ice cream.

"I think it's the best seller - every time I come, it's sold out," said Bermudas.

Another local designer had a hand in the apple pie ice cream, where you taste all of the flavors of the apple pie, just not the ice cream.

The coffee shop down the street even has a flavor - they buy the Rocketfuel, an iced coffee brew that they make at the Sweetleaf coffee shop.

The local chiropractor really thought about his flavor - it is called, "Dr. Ippolito's chocolate salted cashew butter". The cocoa has antioxidants, the sea salt provides minerals, and he chose cashew butter because it's healthier than peanut butter - it's just what the doctor ordered

And while the ice cream parlor's name is an amalgamation of Mateo and Luc, the owner's sons, there is a much larger sense of family there.

"A lot of people helped us get off the ground - it is a way to say thank you for supporting us," said Dudek.

To find out more about Malu or to see a full list of all of their community-inspired flavors, CLICK HERE. ---
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