So we paid a visit the other night to a new place called the SOHO Food Park located in Holiday Utah. This is such a cool place and was created by a gentleman named Mark Olsen. I was able to interview Mark for a bit about his park as well as the Snowie Naturals 10×7 Foot Building that he decided to make an Anchor store for his food park. Previous to this stand, Mark had never done Shaved Ice before, and his stand is killing it! It is fun to know that Shaved Ice is a brand new concept for him and then hear him talk about it in detail and with passion. It truly shows what an incredible opportunity this shaved ice business really is.
First, let’s talk about his food park. His concept was simply to create a location where food trucks could schedule and arrive nightly for the community to come and partake of some of the most delicious food created inside a vehicle or mobile stand.
Instead of deciding on which restaurant to go to as a family, we and many others were able to arrive at the SOHO Food Park and let everyone pick what they desired. The options seemed endless. Although each truck had their specialty, they also offered multiple options making it a fun experience just walking around and seeing what you could eat. There was a Pizza Truck (one of the coolest food trucks I have ever seen), there were korean tacos, gelato, doughnuts, deli options, and of course, shaved ice.
The social part of this park was amazing also. You could tell that people arrived alone or in small groups, and before you knew it, they were all speaking with one another, talking about the food and the funny personalities that were running the Kotako Truck. It was a very fun and inviting place, and it was great to see a Snowie there.
I asked Mark some questions on the Snowie stand. He falls into that common habit of calling this product a Sno-Cone, but I assure you that what he means is Shaved Ice. He talks a lot about the Block Ice Shaver and why he selected it. He told us of the many comments that he gets on the texture of his Snow stating that people feel like it is a type of custard, just assuming there is some kind of dairy in the product due to how delicious and smooth the flavored snow is.
On a side note, you will notice some pictures of a thicker version of the Cream Topping that we made for Mark. We are going to offer this thicker version very soon. It sure makes a beautiful product and is wonderful to eat. He also uses a new product that we have not released at all yet. I am not even sure I can say what it is at this time, but take my word for it, it is unbelievably delicious. You will take that topping and then either dabble into it a bit as you eat your shaved ice, or you mix it into your shaved ice and eat it that way. That topping should remain until your very last bite. However you choose to do it, it will be one of the best shaved ice experiences you have ever had. As soon as we are able to make that available to you, I will let you know!
Mark also speaks about the openness of the building. That is one thing that we have always loved and is obviously a main feature of our buildings and other stands. From the very beginning, it has been important to us to have customers be able to see everything that is going on inside the stand. One, it is entertaining to watch someone while they make your shaved ice. Two, it makes the public feel comfortable knowing that there is not a creepy person inside wiping their nose while they do it, and Three, there is far more marketing for your shaved ice business going on within those windows than there is on your outside signage. People are able to see your Flavors lined up in the windows, your Ice Shaver, your clean employees, your toppings, your attitude, your enthusiasm, etc. We want it to be an experience when someone approaches these windows, we don’t ever just want to give them a shaved ice. Even if that is all we do, we want our customers to walk away thinking:
“whoa, that was fast”
“This is delicious!”
“Did you see that Ice Shaver?”
“What a cool stand”
“Look how clean the stand is”
Each of these features mean a lot to the public and you can hear Mark witness to that as well.
Take a moment and watch this video of Snowie Shaved Ice at the SOHO Food Park: