Trout, mushrooms in wine, hot dog – these are just three of the 900 ice cream flavors enjoyed at the Heladeria Coromoto ice cream parlor in Merida, Venezuela. The shop offers the world’s largest selection of ice cream flavors, and there are seemingly no limits to the variety of tastes for the most adventurous of palettes, all of them all-natural. “If you eat the spaghetti with cheese ice cream, it has real spaghetti and cheese in it,” says manager, Jose Ramiraz.
After years of working for large ice cream companies, Portuguese immigrant, Manuel Da Silva Oliveira realized he could expand the horizons of ice cream, infusing it with all kinds of eclectic and exotic flavors, and opened Heladeria Coromoto in 1980.
His first attempt was avocado, and he wasted over 50kg of ice cream trying to perfect it. Now, it’s a local favorite, and can be paired with a number of flavors such as sweetcorn or black bean, as well as mango or coconut to bring out its sweetness.
The shop serves locals and tourists from all over. There are about 60 flavors offered in the shop at any given time and the flavors are changed according to the season. Among the bizarre selections, one can find more traditional flavors like chocolate or vanilla.
The house special is called, “Pabellon Criollo” and combines the flavors of the traditional Venezuelan meal of beef, rice, plantain, cheese, and black beans. Being in Venezuela, there are also plenty made with rum, such as rum-and-raisin. Some odd named flavors include British Airways, I’m Sorry, Darling, and the blue-hued Viagra Hope, which is made of honey and pollen, but shares the bright, sky blue shade of its namesake.