Creamery creaming it at awards
The New Zealand Ice Cream awards felt like the Oscars for Waharoa based icecream company Kowhai Creamery.
They won silver awards for their salted caramel gelato and blueberry gelato.
The owner of company, Jan McIntyre, said she couldn’t have done it with her ‘‘best little helper Laura Smith who got me through all the ups and downs and ins and outs, and who I will never forget as being a huge part of Kowhai Creamery’s success’’.
During the summer McIntyre sells fruity sorbets and yoghurt ice creams, as well as regular ice creams, from a caravan parked at the Waharoa reserve on State Highway 27.
The caravan’s mobility also meant the company could support a wide range of community events by selling the icy treats at them.
She said Waharoa was growing in popularity for visitors travelling north and south who stopped for a toilet and a refreshment break.
‘‘From my time in Waharoa with Kowhai Creamery I was blown away by the amount of international visitors that visited my trailer,’’ she said.
‘‘The New Zealand and overseas visitors loved the concept of the ice cream being hand crafted from fresh local ingredients, and often returned to the caravan to pass on their compliments.’’
That gave her the encouragement to enter the awards.
She said the more businesses in Waharoa, the more people would visit the area, which acted as a gateway to destinations like Hobbiton, Rotorua and Taupo from Auckland.
‘‘It just needs a couple more interesting little shops and or attractions to make it a destination.’’
Kowhai Creamery started last December after McIntyre noted that a cousin of her husband, who grows strawberries, was making fresh berry ice cream with his fruit.
The former dairy farmer, who now grows and exports blueberries with her husband John, thought she could do that with their blueberries.
So she found a former chef to teach her how to make ice cream.
The New Zealand Ice Cream Awards began in 1997 with 61 entries from just 7 ice cream companies.
This year eight judges took two days to judge 334 entries entered by 37 companies and individuals.
Laura and Jan McIntyre from Kowhai Creamery at the NZ Ice Cream awards.