Wining & Dining
The New Pops and Rockets Lab
6/1/2017 1:09:22 PM

If you’ve driven down Pujo St. in Lake Charles lately, you may have noticed some shiny new lights. Just west of Botsky’s is a flashing yellow and red arrow sign pointing to a glass door. Open the glass door you’ll find yourself walking down a long hallway. It feels like you’re entering an old speakeasy during prohibition, but at the end of the hall isn’t a bar full of alcohol; it’s a bar filled with delicious popsicles with an 80’s flair. It is easily one of the coolest new places in Lake Charles -- the new Pops and Rockets Laboratory. 

If you’re not familiar with Pops and Rockets, they’re a local company specializing in delicious frozen confections like gourmet popsicles and now ice cream. All of the Pops and Rockets creations are 80’s music themed with names like Blister In the Sun (Pineapple Ginger with Raspberry), and Choc Blobster (Chocolate Peanut Butter). 

When you first visit the new Pops and Rockets lab, you’re instantly hit with the immense attention to detail that fits perfectly into this small space. The first thing you notice is a wall covered floor to ceiling with cassette tapes. It’s a wall paper custom designed by owner Nick Villaume to include some of his favorite albums. Sitting along that wall is a row of vintage wooden seats salvaged from the auditorium at the old Central School. The second thing you notice is the two old- school arcade games along the southern wall. The entire place is built to evoke 80’s and 90’s nostalgia. 

Your attention is then drawn to the service bar, which was hand built by Villaume, with popsicle sticks lining the top and covered with glass. Behind the bar is a Lite Bright design with the Pops and Rockets logo, another addition hand built by Villaume. This is where you can try some of the new Pops and Rockets ice cream. The Strawberry Piña Colada is incredible. 

But that’s not what Villaume is most proud of. It’s not the customized interior, the app that lets customers choose the music playing in The Lab, or the new machines that streamline production and packaging. 

What is he the most proud about? How Pops and Rockets locally sources as many ingredients as possible for the pops and ice creams. Not only does he locally source the milk he uses for his ice creams, he travels to the farm to personally pick it up and visit with the cows. He works with local farmers to bring in satsumas and other Louisiana citrus. Coffee is brought in from Acadian Coffee Roasters in Lake Charles and Reve Coffee from Lafayette. Villaume’s passion for supporting locally sourced and fresh ingredients is apparent the second you take a bite of their new ice cream.

Posted by: John O'Donnell | Submit comment | Tell a friend




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