Bellevue gem Café Aloe has long been serving specialty coffee, milk teas, dumplings, egg tarts, and Asian-style pastries. Most notably, this eatery takes the ice cream sandwich to a whole new level with its Hong Kong Crispy Ice Cream Sandwich. Filled with ice cream and chocolate syrup, or traditional fillings like matcha ice cream and sweet bean paste, it’s a dessert with balanced flavor and textures. The key component is the distinctive bun, also known as a pineapple bun or “bolo” (an abbreviation of bo lo bao), originating in Hong Kong and so beloved that it has attained cultural heritage status from the government.
An airy, sugar-sweetened dough gives the bolo its crunch and light sweetness, almost like a hearty profiterole, with a subtle flavor that makes it a popular bread for savory fillings like breakfast sandwiches — which Café Aloe regularly serves — and an obvious choice for dessert fillings. In case you were wondering, there’s no pineapple in the pineapple bun — the bolo’s sugar-crackled surface, which evokes a pineapple’s texture, is actually what inspired the namesake.
Located at 10961 N.E. Second Place, Suite 100, Bellevue.