Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Finally Making It After Everyone Else

Afters Ice Cream
2738 Alton Parkway
Irvine, CA 92606

As is the case with most things in my life, I'm usually pretty behind the times. I bring up a song or catch phrase to my coworkers and they look at me and say that was so yesterday. My wardrobe has been called grandfatherly. It seems like we were the last ones on earth to get Netflix. I was also one of the few holdouts among my friends to get a smartphone, and now that I have it, I don't know how I got along without it for so long. Even though I write this restaurant blog, I still feel like I'm behind the times sometimes in trying some of the hot items on Instagram, or as us, cool kids call it, The Gram. What, we are not doing that anymore?

Anyways, I was recently invited to try one of the hottest ice cream sensations to hit OC in years. I can't scroll through my Instagram account and not see something from Afters Ice Cream. It's not really surprising when you consider that this was Scott Nghiem and Andy Nguyen's first venture together. These lifelong friends came up with this concept three and a half years ago, and it has blossomed into a mini empire of 15 locations spread throughout Southern California. The pair has gone on to start other non-ice cream projects as well, GD Bro Burger and Pig Pen Delicacy, which has the awesome Mac Daddy Burger, which is fantastic.

Back to what has finally brought us to Afters on this warm weekday afternoon. As if this place needs another boost of popularity, they have partnered with Sanrio, the world renowned brand that has given us the wildly popular Hello Kitty and other characters. Afters has created two Hello Kitty inspired flavors which are available at all 15 of their locations until Sunday, August 13th. My friend Erin and I could not wait to give these two flavors a try Afters for the first time.

While all the Afters locations have the limited Hello Kitty flavors, their Irvine location is the most decked out with Hello Kitty decor. All the walls are plastered with this little feline, and there's plenty of Hello Kitty merch that can be had while you are waiting for your ice cream to be scooped. We saw many people snapping pictures in front of the walls on this early afternoon.

Now on to the main event, the two limited edition Hello Kitty inspired flavors. We first tried the Mama's Apple Pie, which is a vanilla based ice cream with applesauce, apple pie filling, and crumbled cinnamon sprinkled on top. We got this in a cup and also in their Milky Bun, which is a warmed glazed donut with ice cream inside of it. Of course, the Milky Bun version is the way to go. The contrast between the warm donut and the cool ice cream was excellent. This apple ice cream was okay, as the cinnamon topping kind of overshadowed any apple flavor we could taste in the ice cream. Great hand modeling Erin.

This Yummy Strawberry Cake is the flavor to get at Afters. Both Erin and I loved this ice cream which was loaded with plenty of strawberries, a strawberry swirl, and shortcake bits. This ice cream would fit right in at the Garden Grove Strawberry Festival. Again, if I had a choice, the Milky Bun is the way to go once again. This time they even topped it with rainbow sprinkles, which helps make the picture pop. I talked for a brief moment with Afters Founder, Andy Nguyen, and I was surprised to find out that they not only make their own ice cream, but also the glazed donuts that they use in making the milky buns. I was pretty impressed.

Even if you're reading this after August 13th, I'd still suggest giving Afters Ice Cream a try. I can't wait to come back and try the Banana Walnut Fudge and the interesting sounding Churro flavor that they offer. Glad I finally got with it and made it to Afters Ice Cream. It won't be our last visit.

For more information about Afters Ice Cream and to find your nearest location, head to their website here:

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