Set to enter the Southeast U.S. with upcoming store openings in Louisiana and Georgia, Creamistry—a California-based chain that specializes in made-to-order liquid nitrogen ice cream using all-natural and organic ingredients with more than 60 flavors and toppings—has turned its attention to other parts of the region for expansion, including Florida.
While there are no set locations at this point, company founder Jay Yim believes the state can hold more than 30 restaurants. According to Yim, there are several metro areas that would be ideal for Creamistry stores, including Miami/Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Tampa/St. Petersburg, Tallahassee, Pensacola, Jacksonville, Naples and Fort Myers.
According to Yim, Creamistry’s Florida development schedule is as follows:
- Southeast (Miami/Fort Lauderdale)—10 stores
- Southwest (Naples/Fort Myers)—Three stores
- Central East (Orlando)—Six stores
- Central West (Tampa/St. Petersburg)—Six stores
- Northwest (Tallahassee/Pensacola)—Four stores
- Northeast (Jacksonville)—Four stores
“Ice cream is one of America’s favorite foods. From ball parks and fairs to sweet shops and street vendors, ice cream is quintessential to our culture,” says Yim. “Our liquid nitrogen concept ups the ante, giving customers an awesome smoke show while allowing nearly endless combinations with our 60+ flavors and toppings. There are many unique cities throughout Florida with awesome, fast-growing food scenes. As we plan our next growth phase, we look forward to beginning our search for enthusiastic franchise partners to lead Creamistry’s expansion into the sunshine state.”
Born into a family of Korean bakers, Yim was first introduced to liquid nitrogen ice cream when he spotted a street vendor making it during a trip to South Korea in 2003. He briefly thought about launching a similar concept in America, but scrapped the idea when he returned home, immersing himself in the family business. In 2013 he finally decided to move forward with Creamistry—a play on the word chemistry—after he saw similar concepts opening around the country. Yim and his wife, Katie, made their first homemade ice cream using liquid nitrogen with the help of his father as the quality control “chemist.” Over the next two years, the team experimented with over a hundred flavors and combinations, the best of which eventually became an integral part of Creamistry’s menu today.
Here’s how Creamistry works: Customers choose a portion size, then an ice ceam base (premium, organic, coconut, or non-dairy sorbet), one of 30+ flavors, and then toppings from a list of 35+ options that include candy, cookies and cereal, fruits, and sauces. The ice cream is made right before the customer with a lot of billowing smoke thanks to the flash-freezing process. When the liquid nitrogen (-321° F) hits the base it freezes so fast that ice crystals don't have a chance to develop, resulting in a decadently rich and luxuriously creamy ice cream with virtually no overrun.
“We’re incredibly proud of the loyal following we’ve garnered over the past several years, and we can’t wait to see the same level of acclaim as we enter Florida,” says Yim. “We have no doubt that Floridians will embrace the highly visual, delicious, fully-customizable Creamistry product and experience.”
Including a franchise fee of $40,000, the initial investment to open a Creamistry franchise is $224,500-$576,500. The franchise fee for a second store is $30,000 and $20,000 for subsequent stores.
The average store is about 1,000-1,500 square feet, seats 20-40 customers and employs approximately 20 full- and part-time people.