Rebranded ice cream shop reopens for summer

Marlena Sloss/The Herald
Zach Graber, left, owner of the new Zax Creamery, finishes installing the sign for his business with his father, Steve Graber, in Jasper on Wednesday.


JASPER — A Jasper ice cream shop will reopen just in time for summer.

Zax Creamery — formerly Big Olaf Creamery — is set to launch in a new north side location at 2603 N. Newton St., near Batteries Now and the Waschsalon, early next week.

More than just the spot is new. An expanded specialty coffee menu and fresh doughnuts from Kountry Lane Bakery in Montgomery will come to the creamery when it returns, as will a fresh line of locally made ice cream.

“This was just a good opportunity to take the product to the next level by offering these custom options that we’re going to be having in Jasper,” said Zach Graber, owner of the multi-faceted business.

He announced in December that Big Olaf Creamery in Jasper would split from its storefront on the Courthouse Square. At that point, Graber had already decided to reshape and expand the shop in a new direction. The new name is a possessive twist on his own first name.

Some of the products available at his revamped business will be twists, too — twists on flavors that were popular at Big Olaf. Others will be made with brand new, original recipes.

Big Olaf’s ice cream is awesome, Graber said. It isn’t produced locally, though, and is instead crafted in small batches in Sarasota, Florida, before being shipped out to franchises.

“But I feel like that this is what people wanted,” Graber said of his ice cream, which will be made in shop. “Something that they could relate to a little bit more, being local.”

Zax Creamery’s new flavors of fresh and handmade ice cream include dairy-free, low-carb and diabetic-friendly options. Sixteen different varieties will be available in the shop’s display case, with more available on site as well. Some of the first available will include blueberry cheesecake, Kahlua Krunch and Cookie Monster.

Zax will feature a drive-thru, inside seating and an outdoor patio. A full espresso bar will be located at the shop, and Kountry Lane doughnuts will be featured on Fridays and Saturdays.

Graber told of how the relocating process has been filled with twists and turns.

“There’s just a lot of things that go into making something like this happen,” Graber said. “A lot of planning and adapting to things that come up. So yeah, it’s kind of a rollercoaster in certain aspects.”

But now, just days away from returning to the community, he shared his excitement for the rebranded shop’s future.

“It’s a passion of mine, serving people,” Graber said. “And then also creating things like this. Creating my own recipes and developing things and just making the best product that we can. And that’s just a really exciting thing for me.”

Zax Creamery will be open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

Graber also owns the Big Olaf in Montgomery. At this point, he has no plans to change that business.

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