Get Your Freak On

Freakshakes are the new “it” dessert around the world

In recent years, there’s been demand for over-the-top treats that not only satisfy people’s sweet tooth, but also provide them with eye-catching content to post in their social feeds. From cronuts and other hybrid desserts to ice cream that changes colors or is served in rolled form, eateries have gone to extreme lengths to stand out. The latest craze to catch on globally is “freakshakes”—milkshakes with desserts spilling out of them.


The freakshake phenomenon first took off last summer when Pâtissez, a bakery and café in Canberra, Australia, introduced milkshake-filled mason jars, topped high with whipped cream, pretzels, marshmallows, and even whole brownies and pecan pie. The decadent desserts, which the restaurant dubbed “Freakshows,” quickly went viral, drawing hours-long lines. Pâtissez has maintained its reputation as a must-visit dessert destination by introducing new flavors and expanding its selection of elaborate cakes that overflow with toppings, too. Inevitably, its viral popularity has influenced bakeries around the world, who have since added freakshakes to their menus.


Lately, excessively long lines have been forming outside of Black Tap restaurant in New York due to people’s eagerness to try its take on freakshakes. As was the case with Pâtissez, the eye-catching dessert first generated excitement on Instagram and has since been described as having “broke the Internet” and as “the new cronut.” Such hype isn’t surprising, considering the outrageous creations, which include Cotton Candy (which is also covered with gumballs, lollipops, and rock candy), Sweet N’ Salt (pretzels, M&M’s, peanut butter cups, and chocolate syrup), and varieties packed with whole cookies and slices of cake. Diners can even opt to order shots of alcohol poured on top. 


Londoners are now able to see what all the freakshake fuss is about with the recent opening of Molly Bakes in Dalston. Customers can choose from four base flavors—raspberry, chocolate, peanut butter, or salted caramel—and then select toppings, including brownies, marshmallows, cookie dough, honeycomb, or lemon and raspberry tartlets. The owners started the company as an online-only shop and gained fans for their impressive cakes, but had always wanted to launch a milkshake business, too. Given the popularity of freakshakes, they saw an opportunity to open a shop where they could offer both specialties. Since doing so, the dessert shop, like its competitors, has seen people queuing up for hours.