Charlie & Co dined as guests of Chillbro, and received a discount on return.

Juan of Chillbro Paletas

Located down Menzies Alley is a new series of restaurants, I don't know what used to be down here, which is funny because we have eaten at Ajisen Ramen opposite Chillbro Paletas before they opened.  

ChillBro Paletas is the brain child of a Mexican dude (Juan) and a Kiwi bro (Matthew) in a collaboration to create the first un-official Australian Paletería  (Spanish for Paleta shop).

But what is a paleta? A Paleta is a Mexican ice cream on a stick. The name comes from the spanish word “palo” (which means ‘stick’) whereas the “eta” is in reference to the flat frozen item. So basically, a Paleta can be anything- a fruit on a stick, a cream on a stick.

The recipies and inspiration is drawn from Mexico, where paletas are very popular. Made with real ingredients, there are a large range of flavours, something fruity, and creamy. There's something for everyone.

Why didn't I get the sign in the picture above? Because there's a limit to how far back I could go in a laneway with a glass window behind me. I will get a picture from the side on my next visit though. 

The Menu... So many flavours. And they have horchata too! I love that stuff!

The Paletas

For $1.50 extra you can get your paleta dipped in dark/milk chocolate and some toppings. As you can see above there are 9 different toppings that are rotated, including peanuts, fairy floss, rainbow sprinkles, crushed oreos and coconut to name a few. The idea reminds me of the pop-up magnum bar last year at the Emporium. 

Unsure of what you'd like? Just ask for a sample. Pictured above are samples for 3.

Dulce le Leche Dipped with Toppings $6.50

On our first visit we had the dulce le leche (yes that is condense milk in a crock pot, well at least the homemade version anyway), a condense milk caramel very popular in Mexico, Argentina and other Spanish speaking countries, that within recent years has risen in popularity back home and here. Topped with crushed (Spanish) oreos and coconut, drizzled with milk chocolate. It was perfect! The textures, the smooth creamy ice cream with the textures of the coconut and oreos. It was lovely, very creamy but not dense or too sweet. It was light enough that I still went ahead with the plan to go for froyo an hour afterwards.

As hinted by this ice cream cart Chillbro does events! Which is where we found them next. But first we'd like to share with you how inspiration comes in everyday life. I asked Juan what inspired him, with the old fashioned cart that reminded me of ice cream being sold from an ice box on the beaches decades/centuries ago. It was sparked by seeing a delivery guy with his trolley on Little Collins! Which is something I'd imagine they might do in summer. Ice cream on wheels is always a great idea! 

About a week later Chillbro Paletas was at an event I went to, where we had the chance to try two more flavours! They're creamy though not heavy at all, and so you'd fine to eat two in a row. Though it may not be recommended...

Coconut & Snikerone $5 

I had the coconut. I love coconut water, and le beau thinks I'm addicted. It wasn't creamy or icy, but reminds me of frosty fruit icy poles,  but less sweet, icy and artificial of course. With bits of shredded coconut in it reminded me of the coconut popsicles from another place that has a cylinder at events, and sells through Mamasita. Though their version doesn't contain the shredded coconut, and hard to find. But if you don't like coconut water I'd recommend you try something else. This one's for summer, though I'm glad there's still coconut popsicles around in winter.

Update - Juan has improved upon the coconut paleta since I had it, we've yet to revisit.

If le beau was here he'd have the snickeroon, a mashup between a snickers and toberone, but it's lighter than your snickers ice cream from the frezzer. While there is the choc, nuts and nougat pieces it takes a different form. A creamy delight with different textures. 

On our 3rd visit we discovered there's more seats upstairs and a balcony, 
but more on that later. Lets take a look at more paletas/ice cream first. :P 

Duche le Leche & Pistachio 
Pistachio Dipped with Toppings $7.50 

I know you can't see it and I didn't get a picture, but the one I had, the pistachio is green on the inside. Smothered in dark chocolate, sprinkled with peanuts (Juan's suggestion) and rainbow sprinkles (because it's pretty) and drizzled with milk chocolate.

The textures were a symphony in that they worked very well together, the smooth creamy pistachio ice cream, the crushed peanuts and sprinkles, which we all know tastes just like sugar. :P 

What did jas think of the duche le leche? He liked it, but not the chocolate cooking, which he said had too much vegetable oil which gives it that perfect set when it meets the ice cream, also contributing to its smooth texture.

I found that all the paletas I tried were good enough just on their own, though having them dipped and sprinkled with toppings was a plus.

There's more seats upstairs for the three new street food restaurants, which include Chillbro Paletas, and perhaps a bar in the future too. We didn't get a picture of the seating as they were closing up there. Not sure what happened to my picture here, but I do like all those window shutters, which I've seen they have in Mexico (on the Mentalist) :P.

Hmm... should have taken this picture going up.

Chillbro Paletas is near Kikki K and Max Brenner at Melb Central. Conveniently also near the train station and tram stop, in case your train doesn't do the city loop. If you see this pole, turn left. 

We'll be back for more paletas, the coconut, donut and strawberry are on my list as well as some drinks. I'll update this post after our visit!

Have you been to Chillbro Paletas? They're open from 10am are open late most days.

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