A major dessert arrival from Miami is coming to Dallas. Azucar Ice Cream Company, an artisanal shop located in Little Havana, will open a shop in the Bishop Arts District, where it will spin out its line of iconic Cuban and tropical flavors such as flan, plátano maduro, and passionfruit.
Its signature flavor is the trademarked Abuela Maria, classic vanilla ice cream with guava, chunks of cream cheese, and Maria cookies.
The shop will reside at 269 N. Bishop Ave., with a tentative opening date of mid-June, says owner Suzy Batlle.
An ex-banker, Batlle founded Azucar in 2011 as a kind of homage to her grandmother's passion for ice cream. She trained at Penn State's Ice Cream University and the Frozen Dessert Institute of St. Louis.
"As children we would enjoy all of her ice cream creations: sunset-colored mamey, creamy avocado with condensed milk, sweet pink guava, and sorbets made only with the juiciest mangos," she says about her abuela. "My grandmother's love for varieties of tropical flavors and ice cream seems to have been tattooed on my soul!"
Azucar offers more than 70 flavors of ice cream and sorbet, including beloved Cuban options such as mamey, a tropical fruit, and mantecado, an almond biscuit.
They also do ice cream treats and seasonal items such as a red velvet ice cream cake with cupcakes, and the pumpkin flan ice cream pie they offered at Thanksgiving.
Batlle is doing a shop in Dallas because she has family here.
"I have a brother who's a neurosurgeon in Dallas," she says. "At the ripe old age of 85, my mom decided to move here. And then both of my children graduated from college and moved to Texas, so I'm here all the time."
She subsequently fell in love with the Bishop Arts District. "It's such a great area with a wonderful atmosphere, I said, 'I gotta be part of this,'" she says.
The store in Miami is noted for its giant multi-colorful ice cream cone sculpture on the facade, set against a backdrop of a painted blue sky — a tradition she'll recreate here.
"The Dallas location is not quite as tall as Miami, that's 29 feet tall," she says. "So in Dallas, we're going to put an ice cream cone on its side, melting down the building. As a matter of fact, I'm looking for an artist to help us do it."
"The concept for our ice cream store came out of the love for my abuela and an admiration for Miami's Little Havana neighborhood and what it represents," Batlle says. "There is always a buzz in the air in our new neighborhood. I feel like we can recreate that here."