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Spotlight: Food Entrepreneur Anna Gaul of Tipping Cow

Anna making ice cream
Anna making ice cream
Anna Gaul

With flavors like Strawberry Basil, Earl Grey Lemon, and Sweet Corn, Tipping Cow Ice Cream is a definite attention-grabber. It’s also quite new. Self-described “ice cream fanatic” Anna Gaul launched Tipping Cow last August, and is now busily feeding ice-cream-happy Boston.

This is the second in the Spotlight: Food Entrepreneur series for Examiner...

  1. What was the seed for what is now Tipping Cow?

When I graduated from culinary school last year, my parents gave me one of those table-top Cuisinart ice cream makers. There was this beautiful bunch of fresh basil on the counter and I thought, why not make basil ice cream and throw in some fresh strawberries? I’ve been making ice creams ever since. Strawberry Basil is one of our most popular flavors, in fact.

  1. What was the biggest hurdle you had to overcome?

Definitely finding a kitchen. We’re so small-scale, an affordable kitchen is hard to find. Right now, I work out of the Cambridge Community Center. It’s going well.

  1. How do you define success?

Having something to show for myself that is uniquely mine. Tipping Cow didn’t exist before me. I find that really rewarding somehow.

  1. How do you manage failure?

Failure is definitely an option, but it doesn’t have to be if you don’t let it be. You’ve only failed if you don’t move forward from a problem or obstacle.

  1. How do you cope with pressure? (Any secret recipes for taking care of yourself?)

Sleep! If you’re an entrepreneur, there will always be a million things to do. It’s easy to get caught up and forgo taking care of yourself. You’ve got to prioritize your own health.

  1. What are you going to do next?

I mentioned that finding a kitchen is the hardest step. I think I have to do that again, actually. In order for us to expand at all, we’re going to need a bigger kitchen or at least more kitchen time. We’re making all we can, and selling out every week, so there’s no growth where we are.

  1. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received in the past year?

Earlier this year when I was starting to feel overwhelmed and unsure and kind of scared, my parents said: “Do one thing at a time. Put blinders on so you can only see your next step, and just focus on that.”

  1. Give us your advice for aspiring food entrepreneurs… in 6 words or less.

Don’t try to do everything yourself.

  1. You win the Academy Award equivalent for your industry (James Beard, Fancy Food, etc.). When you take the stage, who will you thank and for what?

Definitely my family. They’re been so supportive with advice and a helping hand. And my friends who have so selflessly volunteered to be tasters when I’m working on recipes.

  1. What about Tipping Cow most feeds your soul?

Knowing how far it’s come in less than a year and that it didn’t exist before me, that it’s my creation… And imagining what could come from it with more time.

This Examiner served Strawberry Basil to a fleet of discerning dinner guests who gave it rave reviews. You can find Tipping Cow Ice Cream at Formaggio Kitchen in Cambridge and South End Buttery in Boston, and taste it at farmers markets around this city all this summer.