Mangaluru: Man who made dessert a meal, leaves behind cool memories | Mangaluru News – Times of India


MANGALURU: For most people, a visit to Mangaluru is incomplete without stepping into an Ideal Ice Cream parlour.
The passing away of the founder of the establishment, S Prabhakar Kamath, who was popularly known as ‘Pabba Maam’, has left not only his near and dear ones, but also those with a sweet tooth, shattered.
Kamath set out to make the best ice cream possible. He taught himself the art of ice cream making, and conducted experiments at home, testing his creations on enthusiastic neighbours, before opening the first Ideal’s Parlour on Market Road in Mangaluru on May 1, 1975. Kamath, who started out in business dealing in general items, saw seasonal fluctuations in the business, and this made him think of a more secure line of business, that would be in demand throughout the year. Hence, he decided to start an ice cream parlour in spite of there being fierce competition in the segment.
Until then, ice creams were meant to be a scoop, cup or a slab, but Kamath is credited with making ice creams a meal. The ice creams he has created are rich in nuts, fruits and dry fruits. Since the beginning, innovation has been a mainstay of Ideal. It’s famous ice cream concoction ‘Gadbad’ a blend of flavours, fresh and dry fruits and mixed fruit jelly, bears testimony to this. ‘Gadbad’ became so popular, that the ice cream dessert has now become a generic name, and imitations of this can be found in most of the ice cream parlours in the coastal belt. Gadbad was a product available in Udupi, but was known as ‘Gadibdi’ in Kannada, and it became an instant hit in Mangaluru.
Close to Gadbad in terms of sale is Parfait. The ice cream flavours in Parfait vary when compared to Gadbad, and is a little expensive. They both account for close to 60% of parlour sales.
Mukund Kamath, the son of Prabhakar Kamath, says, “What’s significant about Ideal Ice Cream is that it is 100% vegetarian. No egg is used. Just pure fresh milk, cream and a secret formula that remains within the family.” Mukund, along with his father, introduced Tiramisu another popular product, and they believe that more than creating an ice cream, naming it is a challenge. They are also credited with introducing I-Thali or an ice-cream thali.
“In recent time, Ideal Ice Cream has diversified its product portfolio to include a number of retail products. These include ice candies, chocobars, ice lollies, choconutz, ice cream cones, ice cream sundaes and cups in a variety of flavours. To this day, Ideal Ice Cream remains committed towards developing exceptional new super premium ice cream experiences, releasing new flavours every year,” he said.
Ideal Ice Cream had bagged eight medals in season six of the Great Indian Ice Cream and Frozen Dessert competition held in Gurugram in 2017. Ideal Ice Cream had won the maximum award among the 103 participants from across India.
‘Pabba Maam’ indeed leaves behind sweet an cool memories. Following the demise of the septuagenarian, Union minister of state for entrepreneurship & skill development Rajeev Chandrasekhar tweeted: “Thank you for all the sweet memories.”
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Sagar Biswas

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