The hugely popular Aqua S, Sydney’s dreamy soft-serve ice-cream parlour, opened its first Melbourne store on June 21. Its fourth store in Australia, it comes with everything we love about the original – sea-salt soft serves in bright, aqua blue; striking toppings, such as fairy floss and toasted marshmallow; and new flavours every fortnight.

But the Melbourne branch has its own fresh ideas, too, such as slushies with soft serve on top. The shop only has a few seats and the walls are striped with baby blue, pink and yellows.

Co-founder of Aqua S Jennifer Lam says, “We chose Melbourne as our second city [in Australia] for expansion because we saw many comments on social media asking us to come.”

Aqua S’s first store opened last year in Sydney. Lam was inspired to bring the sea-salt soft serves to Australia after trying them in Okinawa. She introduced the signature electric-blue colour to Aqua S.

It has an unusual taste. The saltiness of the ice-cream hits first, but it’s tempered by the fairy floss and marshmallow, which is toasted via blowtorch in the shop.

The photogenic dessert has customers stopping on their way out to pose with their soft serve in front of the store’s wall decorated with cloudy-blue skies.

Try the signature sea salt, pandan, or lemon-squash soft serve, and top it with fairy floss, sweet popcorn, popping candy, toasted marshmallow, palmiers, mochi or sweet egg roll.

The slushy comes in lychee or peach iced tea. There are milk-free, gluten-free, egg-free and nut-free soft-serve options, too.

Aqua S is going global. The fist store in China’s Xiamen opened two weeks ago, and there’s a second store already on the way. There are also plans for stores in Singapore and New Zealand this year.

Aqua S
16 Red Cape Lane, Melbourne QV, Melbourne

Daily 12pm–10pm