The owners of Off Track Ice Cream originally planned to open their downtown Charleston shop by Memorial Day weekend but now say it’s on track to open Saturday, June 29.
Alissa Zera, who co-owns Off Track with her husband Marc, said they pushed the opening back because they don’t yet have enough ice cream to sell.
“Right now, we’re making ice cream nonstop,” she said. “As soon as we make enough ice cream to open, we’ll open. We’re working as fast as we can.”
Off Track, at 6 Beaufain St., passed its final inspections last week allowing the couple to start making batches of hard scoop ice cream in its production kitchen.
The shop will open at 1 p.m. Saturday with 10 flavors, according to an announcement Tuesday on Instagram.
Eventually, they’ll serve 20 flavors, including seven vegan options, made with a base of coconut cream, cashews, cane sugar and sunflower oil.
Scale-wise, Zera says, it’s a jump in production from when the pair started making ice cream in 2016 out of their New York City home where they would produce quart-sized batches for friends and to sell at a tavern in The Bronx.
“Marc and I were looking for a way to get out of New York and out of our corporate careers,” she said. “And we felt like the ice cream we were making was really good.”
They moved to Charleston in August and soon after started renovating the Beaufain Street building, which was built in 1875.
They’re making “clean and natural” ice cream with local ingredients and no artificial flavors or additives. Off Track’s strawberry ice cream, for example, includes just four ingredients: organic strawberries, cream, cane sugar and local egg yolks.
For more inventive flavors, the Zeras are sourcing bourbon from High Wire Distilling to make Brown Butter Bourbon Cake ice cream and are making Pluff Mud Porter Chocolate Chip with beer from Holy City Brewing. Both flavors are alcoholic, at just around 1 percent ABV.
On the vegan front, they'll have a peanut butter and jelly flavor made with concord grape juice, peanut butter fudge and chunks of peanut butter cookies.
Off Track will be open from 1-8 p.m. until next Thursday. Its normal hours will be 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday-Wednesday and 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Thursday-Saturday.
For more info, follow Off Track at facebook.com/offtrackicecream.