When the sun is beating down and a hot mugginess fills the air, chances are there’s one thing on your mind: a cool treat. Preferably an ice cream of some variation, be it gelato, frozen yogurt, sorbetto or shaved ice. Where do you go for the coolest sweet treats? We did some careful research that included taste tests, cost comparisons and conversations with locals, and came up with the five top spots for coned or dished bliss!


screamer richmond

This blend of pineapple and vanilla soft serve ice cream from Screamers cost just $3, and I found it way too much for one person. (PHOTO: LAUREN KRAMER)

1. Screamers (Steveston Village)

If you’re short on cash but in the mood for a large serving, head to Screamers, on the corner of 3rd Avenue and Bayview Street. Named for its signature dish, a flavoured slurpee serviced with soft serve ice cream, the quantities are large and the price comparatively inexpensive. There are three ice cream options: vanilla, pineapple or a combination of both, and you can choose ice cream on its own, or the screamer. Either way, it will take you a while to work through this cool treat. We ordered the kids’ size at $2 and found it easily enough ice cream to share. Prices start at $2 and go up to $6, and there’s seldom a long line outside this cash-only parlour. Another plus: the ice cream is fat free, lactose free, gluten free and cholesterol free. Sugar free? Definitely not!

Location: 3rd Avenue and Bayview Street (604) 364-8740



A lychee-flavoured serving of shaved ice at Frappe Bliss comes topped with condensed milk and tastes feathery light and wonderfully refreshing on the tongue. (PHOTO: LAUREN KRAMER)

2. Frappe Bliss (Aberdeen Centre)

If you happen to find yourself retreating to the air conditioning of Aberdeen Centre on a hot day, make your way to the food court and don’t stop until you reach Frappe Bliss. Originally from Taiwan, this parlour offers a unique twist on shaved ice, different to anything I’ve tasted up until now. Served in fun pink cups, you can order it flavoured with strawberry, lychee, kiwi or peach for $4 per cup. I ordered the litchi/lychee flavour, which came topped with condensed milk. It was divinely light, refreshing and fine on the tongue. And unlike ice cream, it doesn’t melt or become a mushy mess minutes after you hold it in your hand. Other options on the menu include the Peanuts Iceberg ($4.50) with peanuts and chocolate sauce, the Formosa Treasures ($6), with fresh taro, red beans, chewy rice balls and black glutinous rice, and the Chocolate Earthquake, which a couple 10-year-olds swore up and down was Frappe Bliss’ best choice, with Oreo and chocolate sauce ($4.50). My daughter ordered it and demolished her ample serving in minutes. It was utterly delish.

Location: Third Floor Food Court in Aberdeen Centre, 4151 Hazelbridge Way (604) 270-1234


frappe bliss

For $4.50 you too could devour the Chocolate Earthquake at Frappe Bliss. (PHOTO: LAUREN KRAMER)



My daughter chose a double scoop of white chocolate and Oreo ice cream at Froshberg Gelato. (PHOTO: LAUREN KRAMER)

3. Froshberg Gelato

Located in Crepe De Licious in Richmond Centre’s food court, Froshberg Gelato has 25 amazing flavours including green tea, Donatello, salted caramel, tiramisu, green apple, watermelon, mojito and pumpkin spice. The gelato and sorbet—all the usual fruity flavours—are gelatin and gluten free (with the exception of the Oreo flavour) and you can taste up to five before you have to make a choice. We saw customers packing an assortment of different gelatos into their cups, but we chose a waffle cone ($1.25 extra) with white chocolate and oreo. My daughter had one word for it: “yummy!”

Location: The Food Court in Richmond Centre, 6551 Number 3 Rd. (604) 713-7467

cold treat richmond

Timothy’s ice cream is one of the pricier options in Steveston Village but it’s well worth it for the quality and diversity of flavours. (PHOTO: LAUREN KRAMER)

4. Timothy’s Frozen Yogurt (Steveston Village)

Pop into Timothy’s Frozen Yogurt at the Steveston Wharf and chances are you’ll see Timothy himself behind the counter, more often than not making waffle cones. The preferred receptacle for his frozen yogurt, gelato, sorbetto and fine Italian ice cream, the homemade cones send a tantalizing aroma over his ice cream parlour and they’re snapped up faster than he can make them—up to 2,000 a day on a busy weekend. Tim opened up shop in 1989 and between his wharf location and his spot at Garry Park, he runs a popular business, rain or shine. Berry and mango are the hottest items among the frozen yogurt, which is blended with real fruit when you place your order. In the ice cream category, try the white chocolate, raspberry and hedgehog flavours, his top sellers. Prices range from $3 to $9 for the yogurt and from $3 to $8 for the gelato, depending on scoop size. Be sure to come with cash as it’s the only means of payment at Timothy’s.

Location: 3800 Bayview St. (604) 275-7547



This 12-oz smoothie was a make-your-own combination of yogurt, juice and fruit. With customers having their choice of additions, no two smoothies ever have to look the same at Qoola. (PHOTO: LAUREN KRAMER)

5. Qoola Frozen Yogurt Bar

Another Richmond Centre destination for cool treats, Qoola is located just beyond the undercover parking and offers QPops (organic yogurt popsicles at $3.50), fresh frozen yogurt from the machines at 65 cents an ounce and smoothies at $6.50. All the yogurt flavours are kosher and free of GMOs, and the nutritional information for each one is up on display, so if you’re on a diet, you can choose the least calorie-laden. We did precisely that when we chose a strawberry banana yogurt base, adding strawberries and mango from the fresh fruit selection, and a peach-mango juice. The 12-ounce smoothie hit the spot for sure.

Location: The Food Court in Richmond Centre, 6551 Number 3 Rd. (604) 713-7467