Girls and Boys
Girls and Boys is a takeaway joint for anyone with a sweet tooth. The twist? It’s vegan.
Its owners, Laki Papadopoulos and Mark Price, own a serious chunk of plant-based dining real estate on Brunswick Street. Girls and Boys opened in December 2016 next door to sibling vegetarian restaurants, Vegie Bar and Transformer.
The menu at Girls and Boys is 100 per cent plant-based, with no refined white sugar – something Papadopoulos opposed to since having children, and seeing a family member diagnosed with diabetes. As an example, the soft serve and gelati (made with a blend of coconut and soy milks) are sweetened with unrefined rice syrup.
Pastry chef Jackson Magner, who has long been making vegan desserts and ice-cream at Vegie Bar, spent 12 months developing the menu for Girls and Boys (think orange and lavender mousse, a matcha almond tart and maca fudge bars). Alongside desserts, there’s a range of pressed juices, smoothies, thick shakes and speciality lattes.
A Mr Whippy-style choc-top is the most popular item, but the signature dish is a plated soft serve in a gluten-free cone, tipped on its side in chocolate and raspberry or baklava flavours. Papadopoulos loves the caramel miso gelato, especially when served in affogato form, with espresso poured over a scoop.
The space is contemporary with neon flourishes and a lot of concrete. There’s also an interactive LED screen that responds to movement, encouraging the type of excitable gesticulations customers had when they were young and raced for a treat from the Mr Whippy van.