UPDATE: Scream Sorbet to Close on March 10

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A recent thread on the online food discussion forum Chowhound reported shocking news for East Bay frozen-dessert enthusiasts: Temescal’s Scream Sorbet (5030 Telegraph Ave.) will be going out of business, as soon as early next month.

Late last night, Scream founder Nathan Kurz posted a response on Chowhound, confirming the rumor while adding an additional caveat: “…We'll be closing down in early March unless our situation rapidly changes for the better. It's not a certain fate, but definitely the direction we are headed.”

Screams super-smooth, intensely flavorful fruit- and nut-based sorbets might not be long for this world (via Facebook).
  • Scream's super-smooth, intensely flavorful fruit- and nut-based sorbets might not be long for this world (via Facebook).
Kurz noted that among the challenges facing the business include a need to submit architectural plans to the Alameda County Health Department for legally required improvements on their Telegraph Avenue storefront, plus about $50,000 in unpaid bills. For the time being he’s holding out hope that a new investor or business partner will emerge who can help the company ride out this difficult stretch and, just as importantly, achieve its long-term financial goals.

Scream’s unique seasonal sorbets — notable for their smooth, exceptionally creamy texture (especially given that it’s a non-dairy product) and intense purity of flavor — have been a darling of the food media and among local ice cream lovers since Kurz first selling at a handful of farmers’ markets in early 2008. The company distinguished itself by using high-tech Pacojet machines (most commonly found at high-end dining establishments that practice “molecular gastronomy”) and well-sourced seasonal fruits and nuts — an approach that resulted in high prices (as far as frozen desserts go), but also an extremely high-quality product.

Most recently, Scream Sorbet was in the news for launching an ambitious morning cafe program, which was intended to bolster the company’s revenue stream during the slow winter months — a venture whose necessity, in retrospect, was probably indicative of the business’s current difficulties.

We’ve reached out to the management at Scream, and will update with any additional details.

Update: Scream's Twitter and Facebook pages now list Sunday, March 10 as the store's final day of business. They'll be serving up free scoops all day, from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. If you care to make a donation, the money will be split between the employees.

All that said, there's still some slim hope that this can all be averted, or at least that the company will eventually be able to reopen in some form. As per the Facebook post, "If you might have a solution to our situation, write to contact@screamsorbet.com or leave a message at 510-394-5030."

Got tips or suggestions? Email me at Luke (dot) Tsai (at) EastBayExpress (dot) com. Otherwise, keep in touch by following me on Twitter @theluketsai, or simply by posting a comment. I'll read ‘em all.

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