Cary, N.C. — Andia's Homemade Ice Cream might be named after matriarch and ice cream maker Andia Xouris, but the entire venture is a family affair.
The new Cary ice cream shop's wall decor and menu designs were done by the Xouris children - Alyssa and Alex, which both attend Elon University. Andia creates the flavors and her husband, George, handles the finances.
The dream of opening an ice cream shop started when the family lived in New Jersey, but it didn't come to fruition until they decided to take the leap and move to North Carolina seven years ago. George found a job in financial software sales right away and the family began its journey to opening an ice cream shop by joining the National Ice Cream Retailers Association.
After an initial plan to open a shop in Holly Springs fell through, the family decided to focus on catering. In 2014, they moved to a production facility in Hillsborough and The Freezing Pointe was born. The company offered custom sundae bars for events, including weddings and birthday parties.
While the company had a loyal following, Andia said they kept getting feedback that the name didn't fit the business. Some people even said it reminded them of an air conditioning company. While The Freezing Pointe did hold sentimental value (the children came up with the name), the family decided to change it.
Andia's Homemade Ice Cream was born in 2016.
"We were trying to describe our story better," Andia said of the change. She said during the process of finding the new name, the family realized that their customer service was a huge part of the business' success so far.
"I'm Greek. I love to hug," Andia says of her personality.
Andia's uses its production facility to meet with clients about catering. The front room space is used for catering consultations and tastings, while the back is where up to 23 gallons of ice cream are made daily. The key to getting the smooth and best flavor from the ice cream is the temperature and high quality ingredients, Andia said. The ice cream is made and then flash frozen at around negative 240 degrees for 12 hours. It is then put into a walk-in freezer where the temperature is slowly brought up to negative 30 degrees. Slowly increasing the temperature to about 8 degrees above freezing helps prevent the ice cream from being too grainy.
George quit his finance job in February and began working full-time at the ice cream production facility. Last week, Andia's Homemade Ice Cream opened its first eat-in ice cream shop in west Cary.
The new shop, located at 10120 Green Level Church Road, features a menu of 20 flavors of ice cream and sorbet including baklava, salted caramel, blueberry cobbler, lemon basil sorbet and cookie Xplosion. A rotating vegan flavor made with a coconut base will also be available.
For more adventurous dessert seekers, Andia's offers a warm glazed doughnut ice cream sundae. The doughnut is sliced in half, stuffed with ice cream and then smashed down and heated with something similar to a waffle iron. It is then topped with chocolate and caramel syrups and sprinkles. Out and About taste-tested this dessert and the Cap'n Peanut Butter Fudge sundae, which has Cap'n Crunch cereal on top and Andia's homemade Peanut Butter Fudge ice cream. They are both decadent, delicious and good to share!
Another interesting offering is the ice cream cannoli, which is just like eating a cannoli but with a rich cannoli ice cream inside instead of cream.