Located a few minutes away from campus on Campbell Road, the dessert bar Sweet Daze serves up several Instagram-worthy treats — but not all of them taste as good as they look.
The cafe opened in March and primarily sells soft-serve ice cream, donuts and teas.
Their soft-serve ice cream comes in ube (a purple yam), fruity pebbles, dole whip and black velvet. I got an ube and fruity pebbles mix with a mochi topping. Ube is often used for its sweet taste and vivid color. The ice cream was actually much more satisfying than I thought it would be. It was very soft, creamy and delicious. While there are only four flavors, all of which are a little unorthodox, there are 28 different toppings that you can add for 50 cents each.
One of Sweet Daze’s specialties is a glazed donut piled high with ice cream. I tried this with black velvet ice cream, and while it looked appealing, I didn’t like either the ice cream or the donut. The black velvet ice cream tasted almost like chocolate, except for a weird aftertaste, and the donut was dry and unexceptional.
The ice cream prices are fairly reasonable — the smallest portion is $3.25, and the largest portion, with the glazed donut, is $5.50. On the other hand, the designer donuts were about $4 a piece.
The donuts are one of the most striking options available at Sweet Daze. They are specially decorated with intricate patterns and come in every shade of the color wheel with varying levels of sprinkles, glitter and even cereal bits.
The cashier’s recommendation was the galaxy donut, which has some starry sprinkles draped over a crimson and purple icing. Based on the donut and ice cream combo I tasted earlier, I was prepared to taste another dry, overly sweet donut, but the galaxy donut was quite good. It was fluffy and the icing was a nice complement. Of course, the design was also an aesthetic plus. Although the price is a little high for just one donut, if you’re only going to order one thing from Sweet Daze, you should order one of their gourmet donuts. The dessert bar also makes custom donuts, provided at least two dozen are ordered, but these are at prices based on the design.
The black milk tea with tapioca (boba) and mixed fruit jelly was at a standard price point of $4, which is normal at many boba tea houses. Unfortunately, I added the mixed fruit jelly which completely overwhelmed the entire flavor of the drink and made it taste like fake fruit syrup. However, the boba was chewy and the milk tea was pleasant. Neither was amazing, but both were a good, decent quality.
Perhaps the most noticeable aspect of Sweet Daze is that it seems to be almost designed for Instagrammers. The interior design has a minimalist feel because almost everything is white, except for the black chairs. The donuts and ice cream are all colorful and served in cute little trays or cups, and there is even a free selfie machine, which takes filtered pictures for you and your friends. Personally, I didn’t like the ambience too much, but I did appreciate the peppy, hipster vibe it gave off — especially with the K-pop playing in the background.
Overall, I would definitely recommend giving this place a try, especially for their unique donuts. The soft-serve was enjoyable, and I think the milk tea would have been great as well if there was no mixed fruit jelly. Even if you end up deciding that the items on the menu are too sugary, you can at least get some likable pictures for social media.