It's 98 degrees outside, the sun is beating down, and neither AC nor another Super Big Gulp will do the trick. What could be more deliriously refreshing and delightful when you're downtown than something called Aloha Ice?
Miami can thank a handsome Hawaiian named Julian for this. He and his two partners, Leo and Leo, own the Sandwich Bar Cafe downtown, but it is clear from the moment you walk in that the Aloha Ice machine is Julian's domain. Rightly so. Looking to bring a bit of his home to the big city, this brawny islander makes his own syrups weekly with flavors ranging from green tea to blueberry. "Fresh ingredients are key to an intense flavor" he says as he pulls the colorful bottles from the refrigerator.
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Aloha ice can best be described as a sophisticated snow-cone. An ice block is shaved into submission by a machine that turns it into powder. This powdery ice is covered with fresh syrup and to top it off the powder is "snow-capped" with some condensed milk. Is it meant to look like Mauna Kea, the tallest mountain on earth? Perhaps. One thing is certain; as I head out the door and hear Julian say "Have a beautiful day" I know that with my Aloha Ice treat in hand my summer day just got a little bit cooler.
Sandwich Bar Cafe
40 NE First Ave, Miami