Dinner without dessert is like a foreign movie without subtitles—you can digest both, but you'll probably miss out on the good parts. Fast-forward to tasty endings with today's Groupon: for $21, you get a punch card for 10 medium-size Ice Dream shaved-ice desserts, including one syrup and one topping per serving, at Ice Dream, located in the Westfield Montgomery Mall in Bethesda (a $42.30 value, including a $2.40 tax).
Ice Dream transforms ordinary frozen water into delicious shaved snow ice, a low-calorie confection invented in Taiwan. Instead of slathering a glacier in hot fudge, guests can enjoy icy ribbons infused with mango purée, matcha green tea, or a sweet and creamy milk flavor. Eating snow ice unearths an array of textures, from a dense and chewy beginning to a smooth, sherbet-style ending, and is less taxing than wrangling protesting herds of snowmen. Low-fat scoops masquerade as ice cream in chocolate-sauce gowns, and a pineapple-kiwi combo mixes tropical flavors with arctic temperatures. In a nod to its Taiwanese origins, Ice Dream desserts can also get an Asian twist with red azuki beans or cubes of almond jelly.