For Geoff Jennings, the pathway leading to the creation of Nomad Ice Pops was – as he describes – long and indirect. Indeed, Jennings can trace the origins of Nomad Ice Pops to his time as a raft guide in Guatemala over eight years ago. Stumbling upon a small rural shop that sold palettas (or ice pops), Jennings was compelled by the use of fresh fruits inside what he thought was a fairly established frozen treat.
“I had grown up with the idea that popsicles were made from sugar water that you got out of the box from the freezer,” Jennings recalls. However, after years of experimenting with different flavors and getting feedback from family and friends, Jennings grew enough confidence to start a business based on his adaptation of the Guatemalan treat. Determined to find a kitchen, Jennings eventually found a vacant spot in the heart of the historic Mission District.
“We have a history in this area, and there’s really no one doing frozen desserts around here, so it seemed like an opportunity to start a unique business,” Jennings said. Using a former office as his new kitchen, Jennings renovated the space to comply with local health codes, adding a kitchen, freezers and a small dining area using repurposed wood that used to make up the building’s flooring. The space is certainly small, but comfortable enough for patrons to shop around for their favorite treat.
As for the treat itself, Jennings describes his frozen pops as a sweet pop made from whole fruits and natural ingredients. “The process is shockingly simple,” Jennings said. “Most of them are literally ingredients blended together, and my blender is my most used tool.” Once Jennings pours his mixture into a stainless steel mold, he freezes the pops using a machine that employs liquid alcohol that allow the ingredients to freeze in about an hour. “The pops, of course, never come into contact with the alcohol,” Jennings notes.
Using this process, Jennings plans to offer a variety of flavors that rotate on a seasonal basis. “We make everything from a peanut butter pop with salted honey that everyone seems to love, to a strawberry mint which is probably our most popular pop with kids.”
You can learn more about Nomad Ice Pops by visiting their website or by calling 626.872.5757.