[Photos: Alice Gao]

As mass-market ice cream goes, Häagen-Dazs is one of our go-to brands—so we had to try their four new flavors. They're available in the Häagen-Dazs shops for the next four months, and to be released in supermarkets soon after. The new flavors are all inspired by existing desserts: Coconut Macaroon, Spiced Caramel Biscuit and Salted Caramel Truffle, and Vanilla Bean Espresso.

The Coconut Macaroon isn't particularly heavy on the coconut—whether that's a good or a bad thing depends on your palate. What you do get out of this flavor is the rich, custard base that Häagen-Dazs is known for, with little crumbles of coconut macaroon cookie that hold their texture within the ice cream. As a coconut fanatic myself, I wouldn't order this to get a fix of that flavor, but rather to get something with a bit more character than vanilla.

Two new caramel flavors are on the menu, with the Spiced Caramel Biscuit pictured above. Caramel and shortbread cookie do play a strong role, stronger than the spice, which is dominated by the caramel's gooey sweetness. In Häagen-Dazs shops, the flavor also comes as a sundae, layered with globs of warm caramel and dollops of whipped cream, topped with two biscuits. Extra fixings never bother me, but in terms of these flavors, the ice cream alone definitely does the job.

The second of two new caramel flavors is Salted Caramel Truffle. Häagen-Dazs doesn't skimp on the chocolaty chunks laced within the ice cream; each bite can guarantee at least one rich, dark chocolate truffle tucked away. This flavor also comes in sundae form, though topped with two chocolate coated pretzels. Again, not necessary, with all of the sweet and gooey mix-in's going on here, but the chocolate coated pretzels were a bit more exciting than the biscuits.

Vanilla Bean Espresso stole the show. Think of affogato, but not having to worry about your ice cream turning into soup within a matter of seconds. This is simply vanilla bean ice cream, speckled with tiny little grains of espresso powder. The floral vanilla beans hits your tastebuds first, and slowly the rich taste of espresso sets in. Truly a complex flavor and not as sweet as some of the caramel flavors.

Try them at Häagen-Dazs


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