A new craft ice cream business is about to launch in coffee shops and restaurants around the city.
Tara VanWagoner started making ice cream from scratch as a hobby, but after a few years she decided she wanted to turn her hobby into a full-fledged business.
“I got this dream and vision about two years ago,” she said. “I was making ice cream for fun from home and experimenting [with flavors]. I thought maybe someday I’d have my own business.”
She realized, why wait. “I had the realization what am I waiting for? Why not do this now?” she said.
VanWagoner plans to rollout Cone Appétit ice cream in August in a handful of coffee shops and restaurants across Grand Rapids. She’ll be making announcements as to exactly where her ice cream will be available throughout the month on the company’s social media accounts.
She described some of the flavors that will be available.
“I’d say the most popular flavor is the Salted Caramel,” she said. “There is one called Almond ‘Bout That Base, which is an almond infused ice cream base with Nantucket Baking Company brownies. Kona Mud Pie is a very popular one that is very rich. It’s made with Rowster’s espresso, chocolate ganache and Oreo. That one get’s people pretty excited.”
VanWagoner said in total she’s got about 20 flavors ready to go, though she’s experimented with nearly 50 flavor options in preparation for launching her business. She expects the coffee shops and restaurants will select a couple of flavors each week to offer customers.
She makes all of her ice cream from scratch using mostly local ingredients. “I use a lot of Ferris Nuts in my ice cream and other local products. That is very important to me.”
VanWagoner wants her business to be a force for good. Her tagline is “craft ice cream made with a purpose.”
“The mission is to abolish human trafficking,” she said. “I am partnered with Exodus Cry, an organization located in Kansas City, missouri but they do work everywhere. Part of the ice cream proceeds go to Exodus Cry.”
Looking ahead, VanWagoner said her ultimate goal is to open her own storefront. She doesn’t want to rush that process, but she said she’d like to do that sooner rather than later.
To find out where you can try Cone Appétit once its available VanWagoner said to follow her on social media.