By Elena Kadvany
Portland ice cream shop Salt & Straw coming to Palo AltoUploaded: Jun 4, 2018
Salt & Straw, a string of ice cream shops born in Portland, Oregon, is opening a new location in downtown Palo Alto.
The ice cream company, known for inventive flavors that draw from local products, first expanded to the Bay Area in 2017 with two shops in San Francisco. The Palo Alto outpost will open this fall at 250 University Ave., Suite 110, the space recently vacated by candy shop Rocket Fizz.
Cousins Kim and Tyler Malek started Salt & Straw in 2011 and now operate 15 locations, including in San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego and Seattle. They teamed up after Kim tired of working in the Fortune 500 world (she had wanted to open an ice cream scoop shop since 1996) and Tyler decided to attend culinary school, according to the Salt & Straw website.
All Salt & Straw ice cream is made in small batches using local, organic ingredients.
A cone with scoops of chocolate and strawberry Salt & Straw ice cream. Photo by Leela Cyd Ross/courtesy Salt & Straw.
Salt & Straw has a stable of flavors that are always available, such as sea salt with caramel ribbons and honey lavender, but rotates in seasonal flavors on a monthly basis. This month, the shops debuted special flavors created by chefs in cities Salt & Straw operates in. Other collaborations have included flavors created by local elementary school students and ones using excess ingredients to highlight the country's food-waste problem.
The company also collaborates with local vendors to create flavors unique to each region. The Palo Alto shop, for example, will have freckled mint chip made with chocolate from San Francisco's TCHO and another flavor made with Cowgirl Creamery's Mt. Tam cheese, Acme Bread and sour cherry jam.
"At Salt & Straw, we find so much inspiration from our communities so we're thrilled to be opening in Palo Alto, an epicenter for creativity and innovation," Kim Malek said in a press release. "We can't wait to be part of the fabric of Palo Alto and connect with such a thriving and vibrant neighborhood."
The shop will also serve milkshakes, ice cream sundaes and to-go pints. The space will be have "custom design details that recall a modern-day mercantile," the release states.
There's no shortage of ice cream and related desserts in downtown Palo Alto, with Scoop Microcreamery, Cream, Gelataio, Gelato Classico and Fraiche all nearby. Creamistry opened on University Avenue in 2016 but recently closed.
Salt & Straw is also opening in Burlingame this fall. Stay tuned for a firm opening date in Palo Alto.