Popular NYC Ice Cream Shop, Malai, to Open DC Location in Spring 2024

Malai, a New York City-based ice cream shop, is coming to DC. The shop “brings a taste of India in every bite and every cone, through its spice forward flavors, and its creamy textures. We are inspired by the traditions, culture, and heritage that India brings, and we show that through our products, hospitality and design.” The store will be off of the 14th street corridor, according to Eater DC, but an exact address is not yet available.

According to the shop, “Malai, figuratively meaning cream of the crop, draws inspiration from South Asian ingredients, aromatic spices, and our founder’s upbringing. Our ice cream is all eggless, handcrafted, and churned with very little air, resulting in purer, more robust flavors, as well as the creamiest textures you can find. Malai’s unique desserts have been giving our customers joy since 2015.”

Founder Pooja Bavishi’s interest in flavor and food can be traced back to her childhood. On any given morning, you could spot Pooja taking long whiffs of her parents’ chai often before they took their first sip, a practice that they patiently indulged. She found their seamlessly and artistically throwing in spices to make delicious dishes to be utterly magical, and wanted to be a part of that herself. This began a lifelong passion for experimenting with aromatic spices, global cuisines and unconventional flavor pairings. Pooja became particularly inspired by the blank palate of an ice cream base, when she discovered that the same South Asian spices of her childhood – ginger, nutmeg, cardamom, and saffron – could be used to robustly flavor ice creams in a way that she never tasted before.

In 2015, Pooja launched Malai, with flavors not only highlighting the culture and traditions that she grew up with, but also the magic that she felt in the kitchen at that young age. Pooja continues to craft all of Malai’s recipes, and is continually energized by bringing joy and happiness into people’s lives daily. The announcement of the upcoming DC location was made via social media last week:

“With eight years of spreading the ice cream love in NYC under our belts, Malai is growing and sharing the sweetness. Let the countdown to SPRING 2024 begin – DC, we’re coming for ya!⁠ Stay tuned for updates, pop-ups (including one in October!), and MORE over the coming months. In the meantime, head to malai.co/dc to sign up and be the first to know all things Malai DC!”



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