Mochi Ice Cream: Mochi ice cream, a delicacy wrapped in a short-grain glutinous rice cake, is available at the Mochidoki parlor on Montana Avenue. Photo by Thomas Leffler

A uniquely sweet treat (mochi) has made its way to Santa Monica.

After over two years of planning, mochi ice cream parlor Mochidoki opened at 1133 Montana Avenue this past week, the first California location for the franchise. Under the leadership of Adam Vargas and Melissa Lallace, the shop sets out to introduce the area to the Japanese-inspired dessert.

“We really want to focus on creating that relationship with the community, (creating) a great experience,” Vargas said.

Mochi ice cream is the delicacy wrapped in a mochi rice cake molded from steamed mochigome, a short-grain glutinous rice found in eastern Asia. The cooked rice is kneaded into a dough for both savory and sweet concoctions. Mochidoki’s flavors range from fruit-inspired creations like passionfruit and mango (both of which are vegan options), to more typical ice cream flavors like chocolate and salted caramel. The store also has drink options, such as several varieties of boba tea and lattes.

Vargas notes that the location is already popular with students from nearby Roosevelt Elementary School, saying that the store looks like “Roosevelt cafeteria” when children are let out in the afternoon. He said that the “natural progression” is to eventually open a second location in the area.

Thomas Leffler has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Broadcast Journalism from Penn State University and has been in the industry since 2015. Prior to working at SMDP, he was a writer for AccuWeather and managed...