New Zealand Natural started making and selling ice cream in Christchurch, New Zealand in 1984. A year later a store was opened in Sydney, Australia, and currently their U.S. website boasts of having “over four hundred retail outlets in New Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Korea, and Britain.” The United States also has a number of stores across the country. I was given the chance to try pints of five flavors, some of which are award-winners from the New Zealand Ice Cream Manufacturers Association. The award and the year bestowed are in parentheses.
Vanilla Classic (Gold Premium Vanilla 2008): The first thing noticeable about all the New Zealand Natural products is the creamy texture that makes the product melt in your mouth and easy to get out of the container. Likely to be overlooked by many, Vanilla Classic does the standard flavor proud in its straightforward simplicity. There are 10g of fat per serving and four serving per containers.
Cookies & Cream (Silver 2007, Gold & Best in Category 2005): This flavor is Vanilla Classic combined with dark chocolate “oreo style” pieces. The vanilla flavor is gone, replaced by a light chocolate taste with cookie bits ranging from small chunks to a fine powder, turning the creamy vanilla color a light brown. The inclusion of the cookie pieces pushes the fat to 13g per serving.
Hokey Pokey (Silver 2007, Silver 2006): Hokey Pokey has a rich butterscotch taste that is so sweet I could only take a few bites before needing a glass of milk. Instead of the crunchy butterscotch pieces advertised on the container, mine contained tiny pockets of liquid butterscotch gold that were a worthy trade-off. There are 10g of fat per serving.
Mango Sorbet (Gold 2007): Made with 20% real mangoes, Mango Sorbet has a strong fruity flavor without much of an aftertaste, making it great for cleansing the palette. It tastes so good you’d never guess it was fat free. It contains no dairy, but still has that trademark New Zealand Natural creamy texture, which is unusual for a sorbet.
Chocolate Ecstasy: The chocolate tastes very good and isn’t overly rich. The package claims there is “a river of rich chocolate fudge.” Obviously all containers of ice cream can’t be the same, but in my pint the river was more like a tiny creek. When discovered, it did add an extra oomph of chocolate taste. There are 10g of fat per serving.
I enjoyed all five flavors sampled and would recommend them to ice cream connoisseurs. New Zealand Natural ice cream is available to order as six packs, one of each flavor listed above plus a flavor of your choice. The container size is one pint and prices are $70 shipped within California and $90 outside the state. They can be ordered through the New Zealand USA website or you can use the store locator to see if one is near you.