A 100-year-old company has been crowned King of the 99s after winning an award for making the best chocolate ice cream in Britain.
The Kingstonian Ice Cream parlour has been around for 100 years and its chocolate flavour has been voted the best in the UK for a landmark three out of the past four years.
Enrico Mastrocola, who runs the parlour in Kingston, south west London, with his 85-year-old father, said the wins at the National Ice Cream Competition have been down to “natural ingredients” and a love of making customers happy.
The 57-year-old said: “It’s fantastic, we’ve won three out the past four years for our chocolate ice cream – we didn’t win it last year but we won the two years before that.
“We’ve been around for 100 years – my great-grandfather started the business in 1913 and we’ve been going ever since.
“I really love what I do and making customers happy with our ice cream. I get to be creative in my job, making new flavours all the time.
“Our customers love our ice cream – they tell us it’s among the best they have ever tasted, especially the chocolate.
“The joy of ice cream is that it makes people happy, and I see this in my customers’ faces, both young and old.
“Ice cream is loved all over the world – I’d say it’s the world’s favourite.
“We always go for quality ingredients, that’s the main thing. The cocoa powder we get directly from our supplier in Italy.
“I make the ice cream myself and I sell it from my van. We have two vans, one for me and one for my dad.
“We go around the Kingston area. I am outside Richmond Park on a Sunday afternoon and my dad is by Kingston riverside at weekends.
“Customers do come and visit and take a tub, and we supply a few local shops as well.”
Reacting to the win, customer Anne Watson said: “Best ever ice cream.
“I have been eating your ice cream since my granddad always took me to your relatives house in St Peters road in the 50’s.
“I used to sit on a chair and be good, eating ice cream, while my granddad used to have long conversations in Italian, with Aunty Betty and her husband. Happy memories.”
Sue Elliott said: “Congrats – as well your ice creams are lush.”
By Grainne Cuffe