The famous song “I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!” has never come to life more than at Milk Train Café on a typical Friday afternoon. Tweens, hipsters, grandmas, and tourists alike are all losing their minds, Cloud Cone in one hand, iPhone in another, as they quickly snap this magical creation before it melts.
Cloud Cones—ice cream cones wrapped in a pillowy “cloud” of cotton candy and then filled with soft serve and colorful toppings—are quickly becoming one of the most Instagrammed desserts in the world.
And there’s no doubt why: Since Mike Tran opened the London-based ice cream shop in August 2016, there’s been a line around the block for his over-the-top treats. “We spin so much candy floss every day it would fill our entire shop,” says Tran, who slings about 400 cloud cones a day, twice that when it’s super busy with throngs of tourists.
But a Cloud Cone is not just for looks: The milky soft serve inside is straight-up delicious. The shop sells three flavors—vanilla, chocolate, and matcha green tea—plus a rotating special, like Strawberry (think grown-up Strawberry Quik) or Black Sesame. You pick your toppings: anything from popcorn and sprinkles to Oreos and salted caramel.
Tran originally added the “cloud” as a sweet pairing for his Japanese-inspired savory ice creams. “The candy floss takes out the bitter bite of matcha,” he says. But the trend gained global attention so quickly, he began to incorporate more “vanilla” flavors.
If you’re heading to the U.K. anytime soon, a pitstop to this real-life cotton candy land is required.
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