Lexington: Crank & Boom Now Even Boomier With the C&B Ice Cream Lounge
The transformation of the old Pepper Distillery, now known as Pepper Campus, on Town Branch in Lexington continues with the opening of the new Crank & Boom Ice Cream Lounge. The lounge was opened up for a VIP Preview Night last week, and if there is such a thing as a can’t-miss idea this has to be it.
I showed up just after opening, and Crank & Boom impresario Toa Green gave me a quick tour. We walked over gravel near the door that she explained was soon to become a patio for outdoor eating. There will also be an outdoor garden for herbs that will be incorporated into lounge ice cream and desserts. The garden will be powered by composted ice cream cups.
“I want this to be Lexington’s first waste free restaurant,” Toa explained.
The second floor of the stand alone former office building has a large “ballroom” that can be used for private events, a vintage walk-in safe that will become a photo booth, and eventual plans for an add-on deck. Toa’s niece is lobbying hard for a pool, but that’s likely not in the cards.
But the ground floor is where the real action was with the C&B team dishing out ice cream as fast as folks could eat them. With a sweep of her hand Toa indicated where a vintage style ice cream counter with stools would be installed. It will complete an attractive retro-industrial vibe that we’ll call icepunk. It’s a fun, relaxed atmosphere, and clearly a lot of thought has gone into the design. And I’m a sucker for the cool Edison bulbs.
Oh, what about the ice cream, you ask? Well, it was as fantastic as you would think. I showed great restraint in not simply eating an entire tub of Kentucky Blackberry & Buttermilk (my favorite flavor). I immediately jumped on the Lucky Charms ice cream, which Toa explained was meant to taste like the milk leftover after eating a bowl of Lucky Charms. With a smile she bemoaned the handwork of separating out the marshmallows.
But it’s not simply ice cream, but also sundaes, like the delicious bourbon ball sundae I tried, well, and the s’mores sundae I also tried. And out from a machine constantly stirring a dark thick liquid come Crank & Boom’s chocolate shots, warm liquid chocolate with added flavors you can choose. How could I resist a maple bacon chocolate shot?
The Crank & Boom Ice Cream Lounge is clearly a labor of love for Toa Green and her staff. There’s no question that it will be a big draw in luring people out to the Pepper Campus. And it’s going to be fun watching Toa crank up the boom.