I Am Frozen Dessert Cafe located in Overland Park is serving up unique Korean inspired treats with a message. Thick, fluffy honey toast piled high with toppings on wooden platters, an assortment of handcrafted beverages and fluffy shaved ice cream masterpieces in giant metal tins are on the menu, all with names that are positive affirmations. Ann Riensin Piyapant is the owner of the dessert cafe.
“I'm originally from Thailand and have been in the restaurant industry for over 10 years,” she says. “I opened up Pad-Thai Restaurant in 2015 and have managed it through sweat and tears to build it up to the point that it was successful and was looking for a new challenge. My partners and I figured that there was a void in KC for Asian-inspired desserts, so we decided to go back to Thailand to learn how to make these sweet delicacies and bring them to Overland Park.”
Their pastel colors, modern decor and penguin mascot make for a warm and welcoming atmosphere.
“It is a fun and lighthearted space. It's designed to make people feel good! The names of the items are affirmations, so it's interactive and empowers people coming to our store. We are surprised by how much kids love the concept and the names.”
Their most popular menu items include I Am Simple, which is a thick honey toast with coconut ice cream, and I Am Awesome, which is Oreo shaved ice cream. Other names and flavors include I Am Powerful (coffee), I Am Loved (coconut), I Am Joyful (Cinnamon Toast Crunch), I Am Fabulous (strawberry limeade), I Am Unique (green tea), I Am Magnificent (berries with cheesecake), I Am Confident (chocolate), I Am Special (cookies and cream honey toast) and I Am Worth It (chocolate banana honey toast). Pair your dessert with one of their beverages, like their I Am Perfect Thai iced tea, I Am Transformed Thai iced coffee or I Am Sweet Hakka jelly with milk and caramel, all topped with a generous amount of whipped cream.
Shaved ice cream is a hybrid of ice cream and shaved ice. With the taste and creaminess of ice cream and the texture of fluffy snow, shaved cream is in a new dessert category of its own.
“We make our own ice cream block, which has to have the right ratio of water and fat to be able to produce the texture that everyone loves. Our final products and flavors came from trial and error, and most importantly from the feedback and requests of our customers. We have refined and changed our flavors many times before we nailed it down to what it is today: a perfect blend of sweet and cream in a snow texture.”
The business hopes to expand more than just their menu in the near future.
“We want to open more I Am Cafes around the Kansas City area, Lawrence and someday I would love to see it all over the U.S. That has been our dream since day one. We truly believe that we are what we tell ourselves and whatever we think is true. If we think that we are not enough, that's true. If we think that we can't do it, that's also true. If we think that we are not worth anything, the world will reflect that belief on you. On the flip side, if you think that you deserve it and that you can do it, then that is also true. Our self-talk programs our physiology—it is so important to feed yourself positivity because there is already enough negativity from the world, the news and social media. We want to serve as the opposing positive force to empower people. That's our hope and aspiration.”
Article by Allison Swan
Photography by Ike Piyapant
Originally published in Johnson County City Lifestyle