Today we’ll do a side-by-side comparison of Macadamia Nut Ice Cream between Maui’s own Roselani Tropics Ice Cream brand and Meadow Gold’s Premium Ice Cream brand.
According to the label, Meadow Gold Dairies is based in Dallas, Texas, while Roselani Tropics Ice Cream is made right here in Hawaii on the beautiful valley isle of Maui in Wailuku.
The 1.75 quart carton of Roselani was on sale at Don Quijote last week for $5.99, while the 1.5 quart Meadow Gold brand was on sale at the same supermarket for $3.99.
Notice on the Meadow Gold label that this product features Macadamia Nuts from Hamakua Plantations.
Let’s pop the top and see what we’ve got, starting with Roselani…
Visible, sizable pieces of Macadamia Nuts, and a nicely tempered consistency.
Now the Meadow Gold…
Visible Macadamia Nuts on top, but much smaller pieces, lighter in color and more sparse. The color balance of these photos aren’t 100% accurate to how it appears in person, but I’ll say Roselani’s vanilla ice cream base has a slightly more cream-colored tint to it, while the Meadow Gold is more Ivory white.
Let’s plate a scoop of each one and have a taste…
How you like my sauce-squirting plating skillz with the Caramel Syrup? Stylin’ eh? lol Small ‘kine lopsided though, with the two scoops of ice cream a little too far on the right. But that’s OK, I’m just warming up.
Actually, that plate is just for show, as my “official” tasting evaluation was done with the ice cream in separate bowls with no caramel syrup to change the flavors of the ice cream itself.
So what’s the verdict? ROSELANI Tropics Macadamia Nut Ice Cream is the WINNER! As noted by it having a creamy tint to it, that reflects in its flavor as well, being creamy and full-bodied, while not being overly rich or sweet. Great balance. Most importantly, the pieces of Macadamia Nuts in it have a high quality, fresh, distinctively roasted flavor.
In comparison, the pieces of Macadamia Nuts in the Meadow Gold Ice Cream were rather bland and stale tasting, not to mention a bit smaller in size. Their Vanilla Ice Cream base had more of a low fat milk flavor, even though it’s not even touted as being “low fat”. I’m a little disappointed that the Macadamia Nuts in it didn’t measure up, as Hamakua Plantations Macadamia Nuts in the can are really good and comparable to all the other popular Hawaii brands.
Ultimately, because of the much better quality of the bigger pieces of Macadamia Nuts in Roselani’s, theirs tastes like Macadamia Nut Ice Cream, not Vanilla Ice Cream that just happens to have Macadamia Nuts mixed in it. Which at least in a side-by-side comparison here, the latter of which is how Meadow Gold tastes.
Since we’re talking Macadamia Nuts, you may recall those SPAM flavored Macadamia Nuts that were reviewed here not long ago. Well, yes, you guessed it, I decided to try adding some to a scoop of Macadamia Nut Ice Cream to see how it’d work out…
Eh, it’s OK. The Vanilla Ice Cream quickly overpowers the SPAM-flavored powder coating the mac nuts. The savory flavor of the SPAM powder also doesn’t really agree with the sweetened milky ice cream, nor does the saltiness.
Then going to the EXTREME, I tried this…
Yes, that is exactly what you’re seeing: cubes of Hormel SPAM and Pineapple that was sauteed, then finished with a Teriyaki glaze, served with a scoop of Roselani Tropics Macadamia Nut Ice Cream, and garnished with lightly-salted whole Macadamia Nut peices, a sprinkling of Furikake and a “messily artistic” drizzle of Teriyaki glaze. All of that artificially qualifying it to be named “Hawaiian”.
How did it taste? Horrible! lol What did you expect? Pass. Next.
Sorry, but Teriyaki and Vanilla Ice Cream DO NOT AGREE with each other. Nor did the very salty SPAM. After several bites, I immediately scraped the Teriyaki-glazed SPAM, Pineapple and sauce on the plate into a separate bowl so I could enjoy the ice cream by itself, thank you very much. I’m totally into the whole savory-sweet concept, but, bottom line, the dairy was the deal-breaker here.
Had that been a scoop of rice instead of ice cream in the center, by all estimates, of course it would have worked out. But God, as shown, that was so NOT good. “Hawaiian” Teriyaki SPAM & Pineapple Macadamia Nut Ice Cream Delight“? More like DISGUST!
Yet hey, at least give me a pat on the back for trying.
Rounding it up, I think Roselani’s Tropic Ice Macadamia Nut Cream is worth the extra price for the superior taste and texture of the roasted Macadamia Nuts in it, and full-bodied character of the Vanilla Ice Cream, not to mention supporting a local company.
What? Roselani Classic Macadamia Nut Ice Cream
Who makes it? Maui Soda and Ice Works, Ltd. Wailuku, Maui, Hawaii. www.Roselani.com
Where did you buy it and how much did it cost? Don Quijote (Kaheka), $5.99 sale price.
What are the ingredients? Milkfat and non-fat milk solids, cane sugar, macadamia nuts, corn syrup solids, mono and diglycerides, locust bean gum, guar gum, carraggeenan, vanilla flavoring, annatto color.
What are the nutritional values? Per 1/2 cup serving: 150 calories with 80 calories from fat; total fat 9 grams; saturated fat 5 grams; trans fat 0 grams; cholesterol 20mg; sodium 35mg; total carbohydrates 14 grams; dietary fiber 0 grams; sugars 12 grams; protien 2 grams. Vitamin A 4%; vitamin C 0%, calcium 8%; iron 0%.
Big shaka to: Full-bodied, creamy vanilla ice cream. Generous chunks of fresh-tasting, distinctively roasted Macadamia Nuts. Attractive label design.
No shaka to: The food industry tricking consumers by giving less product for the same price (1.75 quart vs. a full half-gallon ice cream carton).Teriyaki, SPAM and Ice Cream.
SPAM Musubi rating: 4
What? Meadow Gold Premium Macadamia Nut Ice Cream featuring Hamakua Plantations Macadamia Nuts
Who makes it? Meadow Gold Dairies in Dallas, Texas www.lanimoo.com
Where did you buy it and how much did it cost? Don Quijote (Kaheka), $3.99 sale price
What are the ingredients? Milkfat and nonfat milk, sugar, corn syrup, macadamias, high fructose corn syrup, sweetcream buttermilk, whey, contains less than 2% of guar gum, mono & diglycerides, xanthan gum, polysorbate 80, cellulose gum, carrageenan, natural and artificial flavors, annatto extract (color).
What are the nutritional values? Per 1/2 cup serving: 150 calories; 80 calories from fat; 10 grams total fat; 4.5 grams saturated fat; 0 grams trans fat; 25mg cholesterol, 30mg sodium, 14 grams total carbohydrate, 0 grams dietary fiber; 11 grams sugar; 2 grams protien. 6% Vitamin A; 0% vitamin C, 6% calcium; 0% iron.
Big shaka to: A decent ice cream if not compared side-by-side with a much better brand. Lower price. Uses ingredients made in Hawaii (Hamakua Plantations).
No shaka to: The very small pieces of Macadamia nuts are bland and stale tasting in comparison to Roselani. Vanilla ice cream base lacks “character”. The food industry tricking consumers by giving less product for the same price (1.5 quart vs. a full half-gallon ice cream carton).
SPAM Musubi Rating: 2