An Inside Scoop on the Trio Adding Their Own Style to the Bay Area Ice Cream Scene
Words by Patrick Manalo
Video by Kevin Sutardji (KuraKura Productions)
Mango Sticky Rice Ice Cream? That is a flavor that is hard to come by. But to top off that ice cream with house-made coconut sticky rice, coconut drizzle, sweet mango bits, and black sesame seeds? That already extraordinary scoop has now been “Zilla Styled.”
Kevin Quach, Kevin Lam, and Michael Ma are the three masterminds behind Scoopzilla, a San Jose ice cream concept that runs deep with creative indulgences. All flavors from classic Cookies N Cream to flavorful Lychee Lime Sorbet can be made “Zilla Style,” which is their way of hand-picking fresh and curated toppings that pair well with their ice cream made in-house. For example, taste their Breakfast of Champs - maple-syrup infused ice cream with toasted cornflake bits, topped with candied bacon, seasonal honey drizzle, and sliced bananas. To “Zilla Style” the ice cream is to taste their creative vision.
Beneath the three’s inventive spirit is their passion to create community. Scoopzilla is the place where people can come together, have a good time through ice cream, and bring memorable experiences. The three have their own personal ties to the culinary world and the feeling of community behind it. Kevin Quach is a self-taught chef, starting from his childhood with cooking lessons from his grandparents to now hosting holiday parties cooking for friends and family members. Michael Ma grew up with a family of hard workers dedicated to their small family restaurant business with a passion for cooking. Kevin Lam worked alongside his parents and family of chefs in the family bakery, where he came to appreciate cooking and running a business.
With all of these experiences, the three came together in June of 2013 to open an ice cream concept for their San Jose community. They started with ice cream fundraisers through Ma’s fraternity, gradually gaining public attention in those first couple of years of fundraisers. With that momentum, they appeared back to back in the Ice Cream Festival in San Jose and SF Matcha Festival, gaining even more attention as customers craved their unique flavors that aren’t easily available in San Jose. The team then invested bigger capital equipment and used the back house of Lam’s family bakery to churn out more R&D in ice cream. Ultimately, they opened a brick and mortar to share their ice cream with San Jose.
The opening of their first brick and mortar was a challenging but rewarding experience. With Quach’s culinary forte, Lam’s expertise in finance, Ma’s specialty in marketing, and all of their efforts to fill all areas in between like HR and management, the three have cohesively come together to create a business that embodies their culinary and creative passion to support their community.