Restaurants / Openings

Brooklyn Cult Favorite Opens Up a New Ice Cream Shop in Rice Village — Van Leeuwen is Embracing Houston

Uptown Park and Montrose are Next

BY // 05.03.21

Just in time for Houston’s first 90-degree day, Brooklyn cult favorite Van Leeuwen Ice Cream is set to bring its luscious, made-from-scratch dairy and vegan ice creams to Rice Village. With this Saturday, May 8, set as opening day. In celebration of the brand’s first shop in Texas, scoops will be $1 each on opening day and include a new Texas-centric flavor.

The brand that began in a food truck in 2008 has captured tastebuds across America and is already sold locally at Central Market, Sprouts Farmer’s Market and H-E-B. But the shop at 2565 Amherst Street is a first.

The bonus with a Van Leeuwen  shop is that each month, Van Leeuwen unveils four special flavors, two dairy and two vegan, available for a limited time for both in store and online ordering. Along with its scoops, Van Leeuwen also offers sundaes, ice cream sandwiches, root beer floats, milkshakes and a variety of toppings including items such as hot fudge, honeycomb candy and house-made whipped cream.

For its Texas debut, Van Leeuwen has partnered with Houston’s Yellow Rose Distillery to create a uniquely Texas opening flavor, Yellow Rose Bourbon Pecan Pie. It will be available at the Rice Village shop only while supplies last.

One of the top players in today’s artisan ice cream market and said to be a darling of the vegan set, this Brooklyn favorite launches in Houston with fanfare. Before Saturday, the iconic Van Leeuwen Ice Cream truck is tooling around town sharing samples and providing special offers.

The Van Leeuwen Ice Cream Team launched their special brand of creamy and vegan frozen treats from a food truck in New York in 2008. Their shop opens in Rice Village on Saturday.

Van Leeuwen has also tapped local pop culture artist and Bayou City favorite Donkeeboy for design of new Van Leeuwen Houston merch and commissioned him to create a live mural outside of the Rice Village Scoop Shop on opening day.  

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“We are excited to be opening in Houston. As a small, family run business, the decision to expand into a new market was a really big deal for us,” Ben Van Leeuwen, co-founder and CEO, says in a statement. “What attracted us to Houston was the incredible cultural and culinary diversity and the feeling of progress, growth in modernity the city radiates. The average daily temperature didn’t hurt either.”

Ha, ha!

From 11 am to 11 pm daily, Van Leeuwen will be serving 30 ice cream and vegan ice cream flavors.

The Rice Village shop is just the beginning. According to the company statement: “Van Leeuwen is slated for additional Houston openings throughout summer 2021, including locations in Uptown Park and Montrose Collective. The new region opening announcement closely follows the debut of Van Leeuwen Ice Cream Bars, a new line of indulgent ice cream and vegan ice cream bars, available in 4-packs through Van Leeuwen’s online store and in select stores.”  

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