...came up with the idea of licorice ice cream?!
Strolling along the picturesque Stockholm harbourside today, I was filled with the joys of sunshine and travel. Spying a conveniently-located ice cream vendor, I ambled over and asked the grumpy kiosk lady for an ice cream called "Pepe". On the picture it looks like it's a waffle cone filled with vanilla ice cream and some tasty crunchy bits, all covered with a really dark shell that suggests fine chocolate, or perhaps some blackberry-flavoured chocolatey delight.
Remembering the Swedish fondness for exotic-sounding berries, I chose it in a moment. I'd never seen the like before, and - filled with the spirit of travel and adventure - I was determined to try something new.
With trembling fingers I tore open the packet - carefully disposing of it in the waste receptacle provided - and set the sweet treat free into the world.
Imagine my surprise and horror when, on biting into the perfectly-crunchy coating, I realised - too late! - that it was neither dark chocolate nor blackberry, but licorice.
Yes friends, an ice cream with a crunchy salt licorice shell. It is, not putting too fine a point on it, fecking disgusting. Sick-makingly awful. Vomit-inducingly terrible. Especially so if you don't like licorice, and weren't expecting it on your tastebuds.
In my involuntary gagging disgust, I'm ashamed to say that I reflexively spat the foul stuff out onto the pavement - not my shirt, thankfully! - before I realised how rude that must seem. So, taking scant refuge in the fact that I must seem like an ignorant tourist, I began to strip the remainder of the licorice coating from the ice cream and surreptitiously toss it into the harbour, or "accidentally" drop it onto the floor. Oh, there goes another piece. Oops, silly me.
Finally, having stripped the majority of it away, I was able to force myself to eat the ice cream, and remove the rank taste from my mouth. The emotional scars, I am afraid, run far deeper, and will doubtless trouble me for some time.
For the wary traveller, there's a picture on the GB Glace website.
Of course, if you actually like licorice, you might enjoy it. Freak.