Jauja (pronounced ‘hauja’) roughly translates to ‘indulge like a child’ – and via Jauja’s 24-scoop masterclass, indulge we did.
Jauja was formed by Po-Lin, an ex corporate type that jumped off the ladder following a life-changing encounter with ice cream in Argentina. While venturing through Patagonia she met the creator of Jauja, Lucia, who inspired her to bring the Patagonian spirit of ice cream to Australia. Following a year’s apprenticeship in-country, Po-Lin opened up shop in Melbourne.
The masterclasses are held in a quaint room above Jauja that is designed for interaction. Jauja views its masterclasses in a similar vein to wine tasting sessions. That is, guests experience ice cream from a full sensory perspective: sight, touch, smell, taste and sound. (Okay, we didn’t spend any time listening to the ice cream — although mid-way through my sugar rush anything could have happened!)
Min, our enthusiastic hostess, told us that we were in for a treat. The classes are split into three sections: theory, degustations, and the Latino segment. Tastes are roughly a spoonful and there is always the option for seconds. However with 24 tastes to get through I would advise you to pace yourself!
Jauja sources the majority of its produce locally — they even have their own garden in the suburbs. Some of the more exotic flavours, such as Durian and Mate (an Argentinian tea), have their ingredients sourced from overseas. The Mate flavour was a favourite for me and brought back great memories of my own time in Argentina. A lot of Jauja’s flavours are seasonal which means that each time you visit you’re privy to a moving feast. Furthermore, most of the flavours are simple. I mean this in a good way as their simplicity allows the ice cream to shine through.
The ice cream masterclasses are a lot of fun and I think, makes for a great date spot. There were indeed a lot of couples there who were loving the atypical experience. At $55 each, the 2.5 hour session/24 ice creams and take home tub of your three favourite ice creams also makes for great value for money.
Jauja holds its appreciation classes twice a week – check the website for details.
254 Lygon St