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La Zmrzka, Their Ice Cream Cakes, and 200 Ice Cream Flavors: An Interview with Lukáš Londa

Zmrzlinar s kopecky zmrzliny z La Zmrzka

We had the pleasure of interviewing Lukáš Londa, who, along with his wife, is the proud owner of one of Prague's most beloved ice cream parlors. With five bustling branches under their belt, their empire now extends beyond just scoops of ice cream!

Lukáš, was there a special spark or adventure behind the inception of La Zmrzka ice cream parlors that birthed this unique concept?

Back in 2000, my sister and I embarked on our ice cream journey not far from Pilsen. While my sister went off to Italy to master the art of gelato-making and craft her own recipes, I delved into other ventures. It wasn't until 2017, joined by my wife, that we set up shop in Prague's Stodůlky with our inaugural La Zmrzka branch. Fast forward to today, and we're about to unveil our sixth outpost.

Reflecting on your early days, was there a hiccup that propelled you forward?

One of the biggest mistakes we made right in the beginning. At our first branch in Stodůlky, we began with four types of ice cream, freshly prepared every day. The location of the branch always experienced heavy traffic during lunch hours, so it often happened that the ice cream ran out. Long queues formed as a result, prompting us to opt for a different ice cream production technology.

Previously, we prepared each batch of ice cream in front of the customer, which was aesthetically appealing to them but quite impractical in terms of sales. Each serving of fresh ice cream had to be frozen in front of the customer, which took some time. During lunch hours, the number of flavors regularly decreased from four to three, then to two, until sometimes the ice cream ran out completely.

Today, we prepare ice cream in our production facility using ice cream makers, so we always have a certain stock of ice cream on hand. Thanks to this significant change, we produce over 200 different types and flavor combinations of ice cream, and we were able to expand our range with additional products.

If you could turn back time, would you tweak anything? 

I'd rewind to pre-pandemic days. Just before the outbreak, we had closed a deal to relocate one of our branches. However, unforeseen circumstances and restrictions delayed the opening, resulting in a hefty financial setback. Balancing this situation was initially quite challenging. If only we had waited a few more days before signing that contract, we could have saved ourselves a considerable amount of money and stress. But hindsight is always 20/20, and nobody could have predicted what was to come.

What product have people favored at your place, and which one do you personally like the most?

Personally, my absolute favorite is ice cream, this year especially chocolate with passion fruit.

Besides ice creams, which are the most popular, thanks to Covid, we've ventured into desserts that people can take away in a box. Customers often grab these treats to enjoy as a snack at the office or at home.

Additionally, our ice cream cakes remain to be our flagship product, which have become a hit at summer celebrations. You can either customize your own cake from your favorite flavors or opt for one of our suggested creations. Each cake can be adorned with icing and decorations (including text) as desired. When it comes to online sales, birthday cakes are definitely our best-selling product.

Do your products change with each season?

We keep most of our products year-round, but we always offer a few items that are tailored to the season. For example, during the Christmas period, we sell ice cream advent calendars and Christmas liqueurs, which have also become very popular. Then there are annual treats available, such as Valentine's Day cakes and other seasonal delights.

In the summer, there is plenty of sorbets, while in winter, it's more about creamy ice creams. We always strive to reflect the fruit market's dynamics, working closely with the seasonal availability of fruits. We take into account the ripening of various fruits and combine them. During autumn and around Christmas, flavors like eggnog, cinnamon, apple, and similar are particularly popular.

Recently, alcoholic ice creams have surged in popularity, especially during the summer. Among these, the crowd favorite is our GIN TONIC ice cream.

Where do you source your ingredients?

One of our suppliers, for example, is Mlékárna Ohaře. We actually visit this dairy ourselves on a regular basis. It's a true Czech dairy situated in a beautiful setting with stunning views.

When it comes to fruit, it's a bit more complicated with suppliers. We don't rely on just one supplier; there are many. We always purchase depending on the harvest and the fruits that are currently ripening. Apart from Czech suppliers, we also have an Asian supplier for fruits like mangoes, pineapples, and dragon fruit. We always strive to select the best available options on the market.

For us, it's always preferable when imported fruit is already frozen upon arrival. This is because fruits like pineapples are typically harvested unripe and ripen during transportation and afterward, whereas if the fruit is allowed to ripen and then frozen, we know it's of the same quality as if it were consumed in its country of origin.

Last but not least, I'd like to highlight our coffee supplier, the Czech roastery Candycane Coffee.

We've noticed you also have an e-shop. Could you compare the success of the physical store versus the e-shop?

Cafés are still our top performers! Although we ventured into the online space primarily due to Covid, it now serves more as an additional service for our customers. Despite the option for home delivery of personalized products, our cafés remain the cornerstone of our sales. When it comes to our e-shop, customers primarily use it to customize their orders.

With such a wide array of quality treats on offer, have you considered franchising as a possibility for the future?

Given that we've been opening one branch per year thus far, and even 2-3 branches this year, we've been keeping everything under our control. We want to ensure that the quality of the products we sell remains consistent with our standards. That said, we're open to the idea of franchising in the future, particularly if we find a trustworthy partner to collaborate with.

What's on the horizon for your business in the coming years, and what exciting developments can customers anticipate in the near future?

Since we've predominantly focused on sweet treats thus far and already boast a wide array of cakes, desserts, and ice creams, we're eager to delve into savory offerings. Many office-goers frequent our establishments for coffee, so we'd love to offer them a small lunch or savory snacks to complement their visit.

How have you utilized the financing from Flowpay, and how has it helped your business?

The financing has been instrumental in our expansion efforts this year. With more branches opened than ever before, alongside enhancements to our production facilities and the introduction of new products, the funding has been pivotal. It empowered us to attend to every detail in our new cafes and elevate the quality of our entire product line.


We'd like to extend an invitation for you to indulge in one of our timeless ice cream classics, such as poppy seed ice cream or salted caramel. We'd love for you to visit one of our branches and savor your favorite flavor firsthand!

You can find us here: Praha Stodůlky, Nové Butovice, Barrandov, Dobřichovice, Holešovice a brzy i Anděl!


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