A truly hand-made artisan product, PURE New Zealand Ice Cream is made with passion and pride. Husband and wife team, Richard and Tracey Bullock launched their business in 2004 after moving to Wanaka. Since 2011, PURE New Zealand Ice Cream has collected more than 30 awards in the New Zealand Ice Cream Awards and won a coveted award in the annual Cuisine Artisan Food Awards. The team spoke with Richard about how he turned his passion into a successful business and what’s ahead for the company.
How did you start the business?
“Starting the business was driven by a life long passion to be involved in the ice cream business. My wife, Tracey and I started the business from scratch leasing the Treble Cone ski field kitchen over a summer before moving the business into Wanaka township. I was head chef at Treble Cone for six years and am a qualified chef by profession, having learnt my trade in Wellington.
Shortly after I qualified as a chef, I travelled to Australia and London to further my career. When I was living in Sydney, I met my wife Tracey, and we opened a restaurant called Chloe's. It was here that I developed a passion for artisan ice cream and the desire to produce my own. This took an unexpected turn for the best when we purchased our second restaurant, and we found an Italian Carpigiani ice cream churn lying unused on the ground beneath the building. With this machine, we went on to producing thousands of litres of ice cream and sorbet for our Sydney eatery, Bay Rd Bistro. It was in 2004 when we decided to move to Wanaka to start our own artisan ice cream business.”
What is the current product range?
“Many of our flavours are truly unique. Our Kaffir lime and ginger, and the Mascarpone, Date and Orange are two standout flavours that are uniquely ours and have won recognition over the years. PURE New Zealand Ice Cream is totally gluten free, with no colours or artificial flavours, no preservatives or artificial stabilisers. For an emulsifier, we use the egg yolk. Our ice cream flavours include; Boysenberry, Chocolate, Espresso, Fig and Honey, Hokey Pokey, Salted Caramel, Vanilla Bean, Roasted White and Dark Chocolate. In the sorbet and gelato flavours there is; Berry Fusion Sorbet, Passionfruit and Banana Sorbet and Pineapple, Coconut and Lime Gelato. We use the very best ingredients available. From chocolate ice cream using 70 percent Belgium chocolate to berry ice creams loaded with New Zealand fruit, the flavours are intense and original, and our product is guaranteed nut free.”
What’s new with PURE?
“We recently released our coconut and blackcurrant gelato which is proving very popular. It is dairy free and vegan compatible.”
Where is PURE New Zealand Ice Cream available?
“We supply grocery through Foodstuffs and Progressive but very limited access, and mostly in the South Island. We supply the Nosh and Farro groups as well as Moore Wilson’s in Wellington and the Raeward Fresh group in the South Island. Some foodservice outlets use our 140ml tubs including cinemas and tourist locations. Foodservice is supplied through Bidvest, again primarily in the South Island although some stock goes into Bidvest Auckland and Hamilton. We are constantly searching for new avenues to market our products.”