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Snow Monkey
Snow Monkey's toppings and a serving with boba tapioca pearls

We're suckers for anything with flavored ice. From granitas at fancy restaurants to rainbow snow cones served from a park vendor, we're happy to order these frozen treats year-round. And now we've got a new sweet spot: Snow Monkey at the Westfield Topanga Mall.

The just-opened shop is a clever concept that incorporates some of our favorite cold desserts. Essentially, you start with a base of ribbony ice that's shaved from rotating blocks of eight house-made flavors such as matcha green tea, mango lychee and Ghirardelli chocolate. Then customers choose toppings, but unlike the crushed candy bars and fruit at other frozen-dessert shops, Snow Monkey offers ones that speak to its provenance--Taiwanese-style shaved ice--including Pocky and boba tapioca pearls in flavors such as lychee and strawberry.

We visited the bright-hued stand in the mall and were satisfied by a mere child's portion ($3) of the condensed-milk flavor, which we had with mango tapioca boba bits and a gilding of mango pureé. Our sugar rush--plus the fact that the shop was cofounded by expansion-minded Kogi barbecue brain Mark Manguera--lead us to believe we'll soon be spotting Snow Monkeys on every corner.

Snow Monkey at the Westfield Topanga Mall, 6600 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Ste. 9032, Canoga Park; snowmonkeyice.com

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