A Q&A with Lulu’s Ice Cream in Miami

Luisa’s story starts with science — specifically liquid nitrogen. While in college, she discovered the incredible process of making ice cream with liquid nitrogen and, to her own surprise, this hobby turned into a full-blown business. Luisa launched Lulu’s Nitrogen Ice Cream in her hometown of Miami in 2015 and hasn't looked back. Read the Q&A below to hear her full story and more.

Q & A

Tell us your story.

I was born in Bogota, Colombia, and have lived in Miami since I was eight years old. During the summer between my junior and senior year of college, I learned about the process of making ice cream using liquid nitrogen. Amid writing cover letters for highly coveted consulting jobs during the fall of my senior year, I would find myself procrastinating by researching more about the process of making ice cream with liquid nitrogen. I always had a business bug and the inclination to start my own venture, so I began to think that maybe this fascination with liquid nitrogen was not just a fleeting interest.

I merged my passions for sustainable, value-driven business and a mission to reinvent the way America thinks of ice cream by launching Lulu’s. I began by hosting an ice cream pop-up shop at various events on and off campus and later hosted a weekly stand at the Georgetown Farmers Market. In May 2015, I decided to bring Lulu’s back to my hometown and opened Lulu’s first shop in downtown Miami. Lulu’s quickly gained popularity and was voted “Best Ice Cream in Miami” by the Miami New Times. Lulu’s now operates a wholesale and catering business in addition to the shop at 2001 Biscayne Blvd.

How did you get started in the restaurant industry?

“I made ice cream for the first time for fun and personal experimentation. Eventually, I explored the idea more through an entrepreneurship course. After testing the product at farmers markets for a semester as part of that class project, I made a last-minute decision to drop the applications I had put out for more traditional jobs and pursue Lulu’s as a business. The transition meant going into accelerated learning mode as I pieced together the pieces of starting a business.”

What does being a woman in the restaurant industry mean to you?

“I understand that being a woman, especially a younger woman, means having to always prove myself in comparison to male counterparts that are talked to with an assumption of proven success.”

Who’s your inspiration in the culinary world?

“Jeni of Jeni’s [Splendid Ice Creams].”

What's the best dish you've ever eaten that was prepared by a woman?

“My mom’s spinach pie.”

What are your go-to delivery dishes?

“Tacos, sushi, and ice cream ;)”