Doha’s Coolest Ice Cream Parlours
With the hot summer weather rolling in, it's time to find some cooler haunts and chilled activities to keep you feeling fresh. Fortunately, Qatar is a nation that knows how to keep its people cool.
As the heat rises across the Arabian peninsula, you can welcome the chill in various perfectly planned air-conditioned venues. Indeed, you can choose from a seemingly never-ending array of malls, sports centres, entertainment and leisure parks and kids' playgrounds to keep you active and entertained despite the scorching heat outside. Or check out one of the many temperature-controlled pools and water parks to cool your core and make the most of the sunshine. For something more off-beat, you could try the frozen climes of the Ice Cafe at The Pearl in Doha, a novel teeth-chattering experience you're not likely to forget, or the snowy hills at the Snow Dunes theme park at Doha Festival City, a fantastic place to keep the whole family cool, happy and super active.
However, if you're looking for a simpler way of taking your core temperature down a notch or two, we recommend popping into one of Doha's many ice cream parlours. Ice cream will help keep you from boiling over; plus, with the plethora of flavours, toppings and styles, it's a taste sensation and is great for boosting our happy hormones!
Doha’s Finest Frozen Dessert Parlours
If there is one thing that you can easily find in Doha, it’s ice cream. The tiny Arab nation’s capital is chock full of ice cream shops, parlours, restaurants, cafes and diners with a multitude of ice creams on the menu. Old favourites like Haagen Dazs, the Cold Stone Creamery, Baskin Robbins, Gelato Divino and Amorino Gelato can be found all over the city in malls, in parks and on street corners. But, as delicious as the ice creams are in all the city’s eateries, we recommend the following five for the venues, the ice cream, the flavours and varieties, and the style!
Cloud & Co
Image: Cloud & Co
A Doha favourite, Cloud & Co is located in the cool, beautiful streets of downtown Msheireb. Offering homemade artisanal gelato in an array of enticing flavours, from the traditional vanilla, strawberry, chocolate and pistachio and tropical mango and coconut to the more experimental, such as Earl Grey, rose water, mascarpone and raspberry coconut sorbet and Madagascar vanilla with espresso coffee, there are tempting tastes to tickle everyone's fancy. There are even options for vegans and gluten-free diets.
While at the ice cream parlour, you can also opt for waffles or cookies as a side to your frozen treat or on their own. You can also choose from a full menu of teas, coffees, iced drinks and juices. Ice creams come in tubs, from small to large, and cost QAR 24 for a small tub, QAR 36 for a medium and QAR 50 for a large. Takeaway' gathering boxes' can also be bought in a multitude of sizes for parties and events or just for your own stash. The multi-tub packs cost from QAR 195 to 300.
Cloud & Co also gets our vote as a delightfully instagrammable venue for eating your moreish indulgences. The shop's style is influenced by the great Dutch graphic artist M.C.Escher, famous for his surrealist-style artwork of distorted geometric realities and optical illusions. So, as one would expect, the venue is slightly surreal and employs the clever use of colour, lighting and geometric shapes and patterns to achieve its signature look. One half of the cafe is pink, the floor, the ceiling, the walls, the chairs, and even the chair legs. In stark contrast, the other half is dark blue. Both halves use backlit patterns and colour shades on the walls, alluding to different dimensions. On the pink side, you can find a pink ball pit, a pink ladder going nowhere and a pink bubble chair hanging in the window.
Location: Cloud & Co. on Al Kahraba Street, Msheireb, near Msheireb Metro Station on the Red, Green and Gold Lines
Hours: Sunday to Wednesday, 10 am - 11 pm; Thursday to Saturday, 10 am - 12 am
Contact: +974 3003 0433
Email: [email protected]
Icicles is a tiny ice cream shop in New Salata, offering frozen delights made in Qatar. The pastel-coloured decor matches the array of colours at the ice cream counter and the colourful tubs, cones and boxes in which the iced desserts are served. Flavours range from vanilla, Nutella, salted caramel, salted pistachio, tropical Hawaii (mango, vanilla and coconut), and raspberry cheesecake to bubble candy, mad berry, Oreo, Rahash (a nutty Middle Eastern fudge flavour made from tahini), saffron, date, apple crumble and Vimto and banana. Each ice cream is crowned with waffles, toppings (fresh fruits, nuts, sprinkles, biscuits, etc.) and sauces that compliment the ice cream flavours.
The chilled cafe also serves milkshakes, soft ice creams and, occasionally, ice cream croissants. Tubs and cones cost QAR 15, and gathering boxes of varying sizes and flavours cost QAR 140 and 400.
If you can't make it to New Salata, never fear. You can find Icicles ice cream across the city at other eateries, such as Toastie, Icy Bun and Kava.
Location: ICICLES off Wholesale Market Street, Abu Hamour
Hours: Sunday to Monday, 12 pm - 12 am
Contact: +974 5008 1181
Kane Mochi at the Mall of Qatar serves the increasingly popular Japanese bite-sized treat, Mochi ice cream. The little confection, made from pounded sticky rice, wrapped around a small globe of ice cream and topped with icing sugar, comes in many flavours and colours. The mochi is generally sweet, coloured and flavoured to complement the ice cream, which can be traditional, like vanilla, chocolate and strawberry or specific to Asian culture. Kane Mochi has 23 different types, including lychee, mango, coconut, hazelnut, melon, matcha green tea, taro (made from the nutty flavoured taro root), karak tea (black tea with cardamom), jasmine, and red beans, and more standard flavours, such as salted caramel, banana, peach, lime, mint chocolate and cookies and cream. Plus, each mini morsel is vegan and gluten-free, and only 80 calories per serving - what's not to like?!
Mochi can be bought individually or as a pick-and-mix at the dessert counter. The mochi bites served on wooden platters cost QAR 12 for one, QAR 24 for two or QAR 46 for four. Or you can opt for takeaway boxes of six for QAR 66 and twelve for QAR 130. Aside from mochi, the cafe also offers coffee, tea, fruit juices, bubble tea and iced drinks, crepes and frozen yoghurt snacks.
Kane Mochi has several branches in Doha (Ezdan Mall in Al Gharafa, Katara and Souq Waqif), but we love the shop at the Mall of Qatar. Decorated in pastel pinks, with faux cherry blossom trees dotted around the floor and branches cascading from the ceiling, Kane Mochi has an unmistakable oriental vibe, with the little mochi delights as the icing on the cake.
Location: KANE MOCHi at The Mall of Qatar, near Al Riffa Metro Station on the Green Line
Hours: Sunday to Wednesday, 10 am - 10 pm; Thursday to Friday, 10 am - 12 am
Contact: +974 3379 7080
Il Gelato di Bruno
Image: Facebook - Il Gelato di Bruno
Nestled in Medina Centrale's Mediterranean-style streets, Il Gelato di Bruno is the epitome of a traditional Italian dessert parlour. Glass-fronted counters, lined with rows of giant ice cream tubs, draw passing customers in from the sunny streets to cool down and relax in this old-world-style cafe.
Bruno's frozen delights are all homemade in Qatar. However, the ingredients are sourced from the cafe's homeland, Italy. The gelato comes in a myriad of flavours, our traditional favourites of vanilla, strawberry, chocolate and pistachio, fruity tastes, such as mango, pomegranate, cherry and mixed berries, but also a range of typically Italian flavours, including Cremino (hazelnut and milk chocolate), Dolce Latte (caramelised milk), Tiramisu, Stracciatella (Fior di Latte with chocolate flakes) and Biscottine. You can also choose from a range of sorbets - apple, lemon, lime and melon, fruit lollies, chocolate-covered ice cream lollies, and an array of tantalising cakes, crepes and waffles. Ice creams are topped with fruits, sauces, nuts, biscuits or chocolate, depending on your flavour choices, and are served in generous cones, tubs and bowls.
Gelato tubs cost QAR 18 for a small size, QAR 24 for a medium and QAR 30 for a large. Or, if you prefer, a chocolate-covered gelato on a stick is only QAR 20.
Location: Il Gelato Di Bruno at Medina Centrale, The Pearl
The nearest metro is at Legtaifiya Metro Station on the Red Line - use a Metro Express to access The Pearl
Hours: Sunday to Monday, 10 am - 10 pm
Contact: +974 4444 9317
Image: Happy Cow
While many dessert parlours these days try to provide options for alternative diets, Mylk is Doha's go-to destination for all things sweet but suitable for vegans, vegetarians, gluten-free and keto diets, etc. Located on the ground floor of Gate Mall in the city centre, Mylk is an all-natural alternative. Its menu is choc full of plant-based goodies and gluten-free delights made from fresh, locally sourced ingredients.
If you are looking for an ice cream alternative, Mylk has you covered. The cafe serves an array of ice creams handcrafted from natural ingredients that are preservative, additive, stabiliser, sweetener, soy and gluten-free. Plus, they taste amazing! You can select ice cream scoops or tubs in a range of flavours, from mango and dark chocolate to hazelnut, chocolate and nuts, pistachio, salted cashew and peanut butter. Soft ice creams and smoothies, juices, tea, coffee, cakes and snacks are also available.
Eat-in or takeaway, this gem of a shop is a fantastic alternative to non-plant-based eatery options. However, we recommend eating in; Mylk is a funky, contemporary space with cute little booths and a relaxed atmosphere - and the food is worth stopping and taking your time to devour! Ice creams cost QAR 25 per tub, though a soft scoop will set you back QAR 30.
Location: Mylk: An Alternative Destination at Gate Mall, Doha, near DECC Metro Station on the Red Line
Hours: Saturday to Thursday, 7 am - 11 pm; Friday, 8:30 am - 11 pm
Contact: +974 4001 2748
Email: [email protected]
Main image: ABC
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