It’s been close to two years since Clinton and Karina Serex closed their beloved burger joint Tuck Shop Take Away in Caulfield East, and we’re still mourning the loss.

But the duo, who seem to have a flair for American classics, are back with a new outpost of Sundae School, their ice-cream shop that specialises in US-style scoops (which are typically creamier and less custardy than French ice-cream or Italian gelato).

In 2017 the pair opened a scoop shop six doors down from their buger joint. Now they’ve ventured across the river to the north and opened a shopfront in Fitzroy North.

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Karina has been a pastry chef for 15 years and has worked at some of the world’s best restaurants, including The Fat Duck in the UK. She’s also staged at institutions including Thomas Keller’s California restaurant The French Laundry and Charlie Trotter’s self-titled restaurant in Chicago. But it was her stint with Sam Mason at Oddfellows in New York that really solidified her passion for ice-cream.

“I’d always loved making ice-cream, but [I’d done it] in a restaurant environment,” Karina tells Broadsheet. “It wasn’t until I went to work with Sam that I really fell in love with the idea of doing ice-cream exclusively and thought of opening a shop.

“The possibilities with flavours are endless and you can play around so much. I particularly love adding savoury elements, especially salt.”

Proving to be a crowd favourite is cardamom, burnt honey and pistachio. “It’s really cardamom forward then the burnt honey comes through, and the pistachio gives great texture and crunch,” says Clinton, who can often be found behind the counter scooping.

Lemon creamsicle – a blend of vanilla bean ice-cream and lemon sorbet – is a near-perfect combination of creamy and tart; the mango lassi – the classic Indian drink reimagined into a scoop – blends thick yoghurt and mango with a splash of orange blossom and a pinch of salt.

Vegan offerings include a Pina Colada sorbet and an apple pie, which is oat milk and plant-based cream mixed with apple compote and a sprinkle of warming cinnamon. It’s not a pie without the crust, so vegan pie crumbs are folded through the ice-cream when it’s churned.

There are also nostalgic spiders – vanilla ice-cream topped with your choice of soda – or ice-cream sundaes served with three scoops of vanilla ice-cream topped with salted chocolate fudge, brown butter peanuts, whipped cream and a cherry on top.

The shop keeps with the theme of school and church (it’s named Sundae School after all). The interior is scattered with school charts and books, religious adornments and a cross perched on top of the perfectly shaped schoolhouse window at the entrance.

“I couldn’t believe the window panel was shaped like that,” says Karina of the building. “It was meant to be.”

Sundae School Ice Creamery
344 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
No phone

Hours:
Wed to Fri 2pm–9.30pm
Sat & Sun 12pm–9.30pm

@sundaeschoolicecreamery