Whether you’re a gastronaut or a picky eater, you can find a flavor to enjoy at Chill Artisan Ice Cream.
Chill was founded four years ago in Medina, and a second location was opened in Akron in August of 2016. The ice cream shop is owned by brothers Patrick, Jeremy and Zachary Jaworski.
The brothers grew up working in the food service industry and wanted to try their hand at ownership. But they didn’t want to jump straight into a full-service restaurant.
“Ice cream was a good kind of foot in the door for that,” says Patrick Jaworski. “Everyone’s happy when they come to an ice cream store; it’s a very positive environment as well as we could show our creativity in the ice cream flavors.”
Ice cream. Sounds simple enough, right? But the Jaworski brothers decided to serve more than just your everyday flavors. Chill’s flavors range from Lavender to Butter Pecan to Dill Pickle Sorbet. Many of the flavors are what Patrick refers to as “off the wall.”
“We like to do different flavors… different alcohols, savory flavors, you know, stuff like rosemary, thyme, basil, cereals, kinds of pops. Kind of almost anything, we could make it.” Patrick says.
“We’ve done kalamata olive and feta cheese. We do cheeses a lot too,” Patrick adds. “Some people think the spicy [flavors]. We do different spicy ice creams with habanero peppers or jalapeño peppers. Even the bacon.”
Just in case you’re not an adventurous eater, Chill keeps seven relatively tame flavors all the time, and rotates through their other flavors for a total of 32 flavors at a time.
“Right now it’s a lot of the sorbets as it’s starting to get a little bit warmer. In the spring, people love the fruits: the strawberries, the peaches and kind of different things like that,” Patrick says. “When you move into the fall you kind of move into those heavier flavors, like apple pie, pumpkin when it’s Halloween time and stuff like that. At Christmastime, and kind of around the winter, you get like bourbon eggnogs and sugar cookie.”
When Chill opened, they aimed for a specific kind of customer, but their customer base expanded rapidly.
“When we first opened, our target market was a young professional who also had kids. But we knew that wasn’t going to be the only one and we couldn’t specifically target just that,” Patrick says. “[As] we started to grow — because we have 32 different flavors from mild to wild — most of everybody can find something that they like. We get toddlers all the way up to people who are well up into their 90s or maybe more.”
If you’re a little hesitant to sample some of these eccentric flavors, you’re not alone.
“When you get into the more off-the-wall flavors, obviously people are more apprehensive to try them. But, usually once they do try them their like “Oh, actually, this is really good, I didn’t expect that.” And then they might be more apt to try different unique flavors as well,” Patrick says. “Most of the time it’s lavender, though, that people are like, ‘Well… hmm, I don’t know about this,’ and then they try it and it’s really good. That usually ends up being people’s favorite.”
Of course, sometimes the flavors can be a little too “off the wall.”
“We only had to throw out one ice cream and that was a spicy ice cream, and that was because it was too spicy. I think it was a mango habanero, and we just put too much habanero in there and it was just way, way too much,” Patrick says. “So with the spicy ice cream, we don’t want to make it too spicy that nobody likes to enjoy it.”
If you’re more of a salted caramel person, Chill serves that too — but don’t be afraid to go for one of the more off the wall flavors.
Chill Artisan Ice Cream’s Akron location is 21 Maiden Ln, Akron. Their hours are Tuesday-Thursday 12-9 pm, Friday-Saturday 12-10 pm, and Sunday 1-7 pm.
Colleen Hanke is a Media Studies student at The University of Akron.