Food

Tyra Banks Is Opening an Ice Cream Pop-Up in Woodley Park

SMiZE & DREAM is the first full-fledged scoop shop from the supermodel-turned-entrepreneur.

Photograph courtesy of SMiZE & DREAM.

SMiZE & DREAM, 2653 Connecticut Ave., NW.

One of the top-earning supermodels of all time. The creator of America’s Next Top Model. The onetime host of Dancing with the Stars and America’s Got Talent.

Now, Tyra Banks is also the proud owner of a new ice cream shop in Woodley Park. 

Banks, who spends much of her time these days as an ice cream entrepreneur, will open SMiZE & DREAM, a pop-up scoop shop, on Connecticut Avenue on July 19. It’s the first full-fledged parlor serving her ice cream, which has so far been available only from a pre-packed pint pop-up in Los Angeles and a mobile ice cream truck in Dubai. 

“The journey from being in fashion to food is very natural for me, internally, inside of my body and in my head,” Banks told an interviewer when she opened the Dubai pop-up last year. “I’ve always been a model that ate, a model that indulged.”

With a name based on her 2009 coinage for “smiling with your eyes,” SMiZE & DREAM serves rich and indulgent flavors: Lionel Richie’s All Night Love (vanilla ice cream with cookie crumble swirl, a salted caramel ribbon, and chocolate hearts); Purple Cookie Monstar and Me (cookies and cream with purple ice cream); and DC-specific Cap Hill Crunch (Cap’n Crunch cereal ice cream with pieces of toffee and French toast). Cups, cones, and pints come with a hidden truffle made of ingredients like cookie dough or jelly.

Banks also has plans for a DC-based “entrepreneurial learning center,” with a curriculum meant to teach underserved youth about how to succeed in the ice cream industry—her team says more details on that will come later in the summer.

On opening day, the first 202 guests will get a free scoop. The pop-up is set to run until September 20, but Banks’s team says she’s considering opening a permanent location in DC if it’s successful. 

“DC is the epitome of action and conversation,” Banks told Washingtonian in a text. “People come to DC and ignite change, which has always been a goal of mine…Plus, my brother Devin, who’s a 28-year air force veteran and now works on Capitol Hill, lives nearby. After decades of working so far apart, I’m thrilled to be doing great things near my bro.” (Devin Banks is a senior contract officer with the Architect of the Capitol— a very DC job).

Banks says she picked Woodley Park because of the many families who live nearby, and the short walk to the National Zoo. 

“Ice cream experiences create some of the most nostalgic, warm memories, like the ones I have with my Mama,” she says, “and knowing we’ll be part of that for so many people visiting our shop this summer makes me smile…and smize.”

Ike Allen
Assistant Editor