Autumn Maxwell

BUSINESS BEAT: Comforting flavours for everyone’s tastes

Ice cream maker blends new flavours every week in Vic West

These are not your traditional ice cream flavours: Peppered goat’s milk with nutmeg and candied orange, Mulberry and clove, Lemongrass coconut with Thai basil.

But then Cold Comfort is not your average ice cream company. Proprietor Autumn Maxwell, who operates out of a corner of the back room at Lone Tree Bakery at 809 Craigflower Rd., looks at ice cream as a form of expression and love for food.

“Ice cream is a blank canvas and the flavours are the paint,” she says, after pouring a batch of dairy-free, salted caramel mixture into her commercial ice cream maker for freezing.

Maxwell creates new flavours almost every week – many include more traditional ingredients such as chocolate and quite a few include alcohol. She is up to 229 varieties on her website (coldcomfort.ca), which lists the ingredients for each.

“You never know what’s coming next,” she says. While she tries to use primarily organic ingredients, “sometime you have to break the rules.”

She creates concoctions that appeal to people of every dietary need, from lactose intolerant to nut allergies. For dairy-free combinations, she often uses coconut milk, which can be frozen into a consistency similar to milk- or cream-based ice cream.

Having launched her wholesale business about two years ago, Maxwell sells to six local markets and a few restaurants. She also does a rousing business at the Moss Street Market.

When Lone Tree owner Terry Worland opened her retail outlet on Craigflower in December, she asked Maxwell if she’d like some space. The juxtaposition with an organic bakery works well and even results in the occasional compilation of ingredients, Maxwell says.

Having operated her wholesale business solo for the past two years, she plans to hire a new employee soon to help cover the summer busy season and give her more time to work on other activities.

“Unlike other small ice-cream makers, I survive the winters on the uniqueness of the product,” she says.

– Email at autumn@coldcomfort.ca.

Hudson public market sees dry run out back

The Downtown Farmer’s Market has moved north to The Hudson building, in advance of the opening this summer of the year-round Victoria Public Market. The farm market, which offers fresh local produce and lunch items, kicked off the 2013 season this week and will be located in the back carriageway of The Hudson every Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information on either market, visit victoriapublicmarket.com.

New service helps young women in need

Anney’s Closet is an initiative started by Soroptimist International of Victoria Westshore to give young women a helping hand moving into their own space. Named for Anney Ardiel, a professional downsizer for seniors, the program accepts donations of furniture and other household items from Ardiel’s clients and provides them free to potentially at-risk women. Anney’s Closet is located at West Shore U-Lock, 1621 Island Hwy. Grand opening happens June 8 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Canadian bridal wear featured at White Peony

Eco-couture wedding dress company Pure Magnolia is featured in a trunk show at The White Peony, 1816 Government St., on June 8 and 9. Designer Patty Nayel brings her new styles, including plus-size options. To book an appointment, email hello@thewhitepeony.com or call 250-590-8044. For information, visit thewhitepeony.com.

Who’s making waves around Greater Victoria

Charles La Vertu of CASK Shiai in Victoria was re-elected president of Karate B.C., the governing body for the sport in the province … Marketing and communications agency Upandup has added three new team members; web application developer Marco Maranao, communications strategist Ellen Henry and web designer Caio Ferriera.

Send your business news items to ddescoteau@vicnews.com

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