Chaman Ice-cream: The Bitter Taste of Disappointment
Summertime has descended upon Lahore quite suddenly. The season of golden sunshine, blooming flowers, delightful breezes and, most significantly, ice-cream. This weekend called for a quick visit to Chaman Ice-cream for a creamy, dreamy cup of deliciousness.
Chaman Ice-cream is perhaps Lahore’s most recognizable ice-cream spot and my number one choice as the temperatures rise. Luckily a three-storied franchise of the company stands next to the main commercial area of Bahria Town, which is a short drive from my home.
The ground floor is designated pre-dominantly for takeaways while the rest provides a dine-in facility for the patrons. Apart from serving ice-creams, Chaman Ice-cream also has an assortment of ice-cream shakes and signature drinks.
Parking our car in the designated area, my husband and I made our way to the second floor. As we entered, a uniformed server welcomed us with a friendly demeanor. The long hall was divided into two sections. There was only one other family there, which gave us ample freedom to choose a spot.
The interior was simple, with hues of brow on the walls, wooden floors and auburn tables. The bright blue, yellow, and red metal frame seats created a quirky effect. The ceiling had colorful hangings of promotional ice-creams cards. Varying size of mirrors adorned the walls and I couldn’t help but sneak glances at my self.
The menu is curated in both Urdu and English. From single scoop ice-creams to Chaman special and premium packages; it proffers an exciting range of sundaes. However, the variance in the packages seemed more like a play of words rather than presenting any tangible difference. I ordered Chaman Special three scoop treat in mango, pistachio, and strawberry complemented with the toppings of fruit cocktail, biscuit, cherry, and nuts. I began anticipating my order like an eager child while my husband looked on.
The Taste of Disappointment
A few minutes later, a crystal cup filled to the brim with fruit cocktail, slivered almonds, and a chocolate biscuit brightened up the bare surface of my table. But then I noticed something wrong. The cup was teeming with fruits, but I was unable to trace the three scoops. I dug in, and under the heaps of fruits, small balls of yellow, pink and green made an appearance.
Albeit disappointed with the portions, I scarfed down a spoon only to be met with another disappointment. The ice-cream barely had any flavor and tasted more like an icy concoction. I took a spoonful from my husband’s cup and experienced the same. A bad case of freezer burn, it seemed. Freezer burn occurs when an item is stored for an extended period of time resulting in loss of moisture. I sensed that the ice-cream I was given must’ve been lying around since mid-winter.
Assuming oodles of toppings and small portion didn’t let us experience the genuine taste of the ice cream, we ordered another two scoops of chocolate and vanilla, this time without any embellishments. The wait for a miracle ended in sheer disappointment, and we scarcely finished the sweet icy lumps.
My earlier experiences from Chaman always turned out to be an amazing one. I attribute this unfortunate episode to the winter’s left-over ice-cream stock. Chaman needs to up its game, given the sheer amount of competitors in the market. Disappointed but not disheartened, I will certainly pay a visit to Chaman once summer is in full swing, hoping for a miracle.