Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Tiffany Coffee @ W. Spring Mountain Road, Las Vegas



It was a brutally, hot, oppressive sunny day in Las Vegas, which is pretty much every day from March to November....so it was a perfect day to cool ourselves off with some Shaved Ice.  With the largest Hawaiian community living here in the desert, it's relatively easy to get the colorful, breezy treat that immediately chills your body, added with the thrill of danger of having to fend off the ever most embarrassing 'brain freeze' that causes contortions of your face worse than Jim Carrey...

Now there's actually many versions of Shaved Ice; I remember going back to Japan and having that version, the Chinese, Taiwanese and Koreans all have similar yet distinct versions that make them unique.

Tiffany Coffee is a cosy boutique cafe connected to a larger Korean Superstore- The Greenland Supermarket, with a side entrance that backs into a food court.  The place itself is relatively cosy, with the service attentive and thoughtful.



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So the interesting culture that occurs at Asian Supermarkets, there's always a food court that serves little delights and a cafe that provides the wayward shopper a chance to sit down, and relax with sweet drinks and snacks.

I can remember hot summer days in New York, when during the afternoons near my school (it was the Upper West Side in a mixed income residential area) and we would see an elder Latino gentleman come out every day, huge block of ice in tow to sell Shaved Ice.  Whenever a customer came, he would take out this wooden box with a sharp edge inside, shave the top of the ice block for a minute, and dump the shavings into a paper cone.  Then reaching down to trough of rainbow colored bottles, he'd generously drench the snow white ball of ice with sweet, sticky nectars-gently handing it to the children, filled with excitements and grins from cheek to cheek.....

........Which was wonderful, until I saw a dog licking the side of the ice block one day......his dog that he brought with him every day........






The menu here is extensive, if not a little overwhelming..I found myself immediately consulting the owner on which shaved ice to get, she recommended the Pat Bing Soo- a medley of fresh fruits: Watermelon, Strawberries, Kiwi, Bananas and Mango with Boba Tapioca Pearls, Mochi Balls topped with Sweet Condensed Milk and Azuki Beans-it was an enormous dessert!  The lady was very thorough and took her time creating for us, which paid off in droves...At first if you're not acquainted with the Azuki bean/dessert combo, it does take some getting used to (I still have problems with the more intense Japanese desserts that have Azuki in them....Yokan and Oshiruko-hot Azuki soup..bleah...)

But while we were waiting, Having heard so much about the Sweet Potato Latte, I thought I'd try it out-an interesting drink that at first sounds strange, but when you drink it, it's still strange...really strange....
It's akin to drinking a Sweet Potato Smoothie, no coffee, no latte.. Actually, it wasn't bad, like sucking on a sweet mashed potatoes through a straw.....cold...



But back to the Shaved Ice...the mix of fresh fruits with the Ice and condensed milk was refreshing and considerably light, given the amount served, and I even like the Azuki on top.  My favorite is the Mochi balls and Tapioca pearls, it's chewy consistency gives the palate various texture to play with in your mouth!!  All in all, it's a high end, classy Shaved Ice venue and I would love to come here again!!


Ratings (Out of Five Stars)

Food:           4
Ambience:   3 
Service:       4



Tiffany Coffee on Urbanspoon