Shave ice, a Hawaiian treat made with fluffy shaved ice and flavored syrups, is something like a snow cone, except that snow cones use crushed ice. In a properly made shave ice, the shreds of ice are so fluffy that they absorb the syrup instead of sitting in it. Now that it’s hot enough to fry an egg on the sidewalk, David Kahn has been craving a real one. Not a Korean patbingsu “with the red bean paste, fruit cocktail, and Fruity Pebbles and all” or even “the rough crushed Mexican raspados and snow cones, those are all really different animals.”

No luck yet finding the real thing (any suggestions?), but lipoff offers that Blue Asia Cafe and Jo Jo Tai Pei, conveniently located right next to each other, both have “the most common ‘eight treasure’ types with condensed milk, grass jelly, sweet beans, and nuts” as well as “more fruity and tropical flavors. … Blue Asia gets my vote for the overall best shaved ice.”

There’s also the shaved ice at bubble tea spots. lipoff likes the mango shaved ice topped with fresh mango at Lollicup. And for a really good version of the raspado, galangatron loves Frio Rico, a small Peruvian market that incidentally has great empanadas.

Blue Asia Cafe [Allston]
113 Brighton Avenue, Boston
617-202-3868

Jo Jo Tai Pei [Allston]
103 Brighton Avenue, Boston
617-254-8889

Lollicup [Allston]
1095 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston
617-782-2622

Frio Rico [East Boston]
360-R Bennington Street, Boston
617-569-1505

Discuss: ISO Boston Shave Ice

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