Around Town

Centreville dessert shop reopens as Cafe Bdan, rolling out an expanded menu

Centreville shoppers may have experienced a bit of déjà vu stepping into the recently opened Cafe Bdan at 13814 Braddock Road.

That’s because the new Korean-Japanese fusion dessert shop is a rebranding of fan-favorite Iron Ice, which closed down for six weeks before reopening as Cafe Bdan on Saturday, July 15, according to shop owner Charlie Shin.

Cafe Bdan is still currently in its soft opening period, offering what Shin says is approximately 85% of the full menu.

In honor of the recent opening, the cafe is giving out 10% off coupons to use at Cafe Bdan or either of Shin’s other two businesses in the Old Centreville Crossing shopping center — Japanese restaurant Kazone and women’s clothing store The Style by Coco.

Cafe Bdan’s predecessor Iron Ice was best known for its Instagram-worthy dessert commonly dubbed “puffle ice cream,” consisting of scoops of ice cream nestled in a Hong Kong egg waffle.

Though customers can still order puffle ice cream at Cafe Bdan, Shin spent the temporary closure devising an expanded menu that caters to “all four seasons,” rather than serving only one specialty item.

Shin says customers have called the refreshed menu’s croffle — a mix of a croissant and a waffle — “the best in town.” He takes care to use higher-end French croissants to elevate patron’s experiences.

Croffles, a hybrid croissant-waffle dessert, sit in a glass display box at Cafe Bdan (staff photo by Vivian Hoang)

Cafe Bdan’s bingsu, or Korean snow ice, topped with a special whipped cream has similarly been a smash hit amongst customers, according to Shin.

Shin also highlighted the cafe’s new bubble tea, which he says is brewed at his home and then brought into the store, taking over three hours to make.

“It’s really good,” Shin said. “It’s more than premium — it’s triple premium.”

Along with its specialty boba drinks, Cafe Bdan serves chillers and coffee, which are all made “fresh,” according to Shin. He prides himself on using high-quality ingredients like premium cream and cheese.

Shin’s attention to detail and quality seem to have paid off, with the shop receiving overwhelmingly positive reactions from the public, despite only being open for a short while.

“People love it,” Shin said. “I check the reviews every day, and right now we got 19 reviews — all five stars. So people love our ambiance, and they love our food and service.”

Since FFXnow last spoke to Shin, his cafe has gotten a total of 22 reviews on Google, all giving it five stars.

Determined to keep impressing customers, Shin revealed ambitious plans to be one of the few places in Northern Virginia serving taiyaki ice cream, a popular Japanese fish-shaped cake filled with ice cream. The shop that apparently introduced the dessert to the D.C. area — Boba & Bites in Merrifield — has since closed.

Right now, Shin is waiting for the necessary equipment to arrive from China so Cafe Bdan can start rolling out the treats and transition out of its soft opening period, he says.

Until then, visitors to the Centreville cafe can enjoy a real-life Barbie experience, thanks to the shop’s pastel pink interior. Shin says the color scheme was selected to keep in line with the bright and “pretty” theme that the name “Bdan,” or Korean silk, suggests.