Leave behind your milkshakes, thickshakes, and frappes – but don’t forget your napkin! We’re about to get messy and you’re going to need it. Yes, you guessed it; we present to you the wonderfully wild world of extreme chocolate shakes, aka chocolate freakshakes. These are chocolate milkshakes on steroids! With toppings like doughnuts, cotton candy + waffles, you’d think a child invented these appropriately named ‘freakshakes’.
If you haven’t heard of the freakshake, no doubt you’ve seen photos of them online. An Australian invention hailing from Canberra’s Patissez, freakshakes first made a splash in 2016. After diving head-first into a big pool of social media hashtagged desserts, the tall creation has barely managed to come up for air. Thanks to this momentum, those unable to catch a quick flight down under to try the original have reinvented the concept of the overloaded shake.
An overindulgent hat tip to every time your stomach has been bigger than your eyes, we’ve seen countless renditions. The basic recipe revolves around an ice-cream milkshake that’s served in a glass and generally decorated with chocolate, marshmallows, or candy. On top, it’s not unusual to find cream, cookies, brownies, doughnuts, pretzels, waffles, and even fairy floss/cotton candy! Sometimes people share them, sometimes people don’t. Whether you can believe it or not, sometimes a single person can finish a freakshake in one sitting…
One thing can be guaranteed; at some point during this gastronomic endeavour a photo must be taken to document the overindulgent and overloaded liquid meal. We did manage to find some places to snap your own pic of this elevated milkshake, and we begin with Montreal’s C’chôcolat, where you can find flavours such as Nutella Banana Split, Caramel Kiss, and Café-Café-Café. Being partial to anything cheesecake related, we are fans of their creamy flavour combination of Oreo Cheesecake. But for something a little different there’s always the green Matcha Matcha Man, which has a touch of white chocolate.
Over in Toronto there’s Peace Treats with fun named freakshakes like Berry-Ana Grande and Nutty by Nature. It’s hard to say no to the bright blue Cookie Lover that’s creatively covered in chocolate chip cookie chunks, but perhaps your inner boy scout or girl guide would prefer their S’more Life, which has graham crackers plus great great big toasted marshmallows piled on top?
Further west, folks in Vancouver can enjoy Nutella, Strawberry, and even Mango Waffle Shakes at Off the Grid Waffles. All of these versions of the freakshake are available to-go with toppings on the side so you can enjoy flavours like Cheesecake and London Fog in the comfort of your own home.
While it’s not really the right timing now, one of the most impressive freakshakes we’ve ever seen comes from Nova Scotia. This limited edition St Patrick’s Day Freakshake is available at Birkinshaw’s Tea Room! While they don’t offer to-go options, you can expect frosting, cookies, marshmallows, gummies, and homemade sponge cake. You can combine base options with one of three themes: Death by Chocolate, Caramelicious, and the magically named Unicorn… During this quarantine period, Birkinshaw’s have even run a “Design a Freakshake” competition for currently-home-schooled kids. Makes perfect chocolate milkshake sense. Who better to create extravagant freakshakes than imaginative kiddos!
While the point of this particular chocolate milkshakes is to be over the top and completely fun, if a more conservative milkshake is more suited to your tastes, we understand and we’re envious of your restraint! Luckily you can access the more traditional shakes at one of these ice cream spots near you. Enjoy!