Dominique Ansel "Invents" The Waffogato, Two Years After It's Invented In Orange County

Categories: Indigestion

anselwaffogato.jpg
From Instagram account @dominiqueansel
Dominique Ansel's "invention"
Dominique Ansel, the person who popularized the cronut, that laminated-dough croissant-doughnut hybrid that has now invaded doughnut shops as low-rent as my beloved Jax Donuts in Anaheim, posted an Instagram photo of the "Waffogato", ice cream with Belgian waffle bits in the shape of a waffle drowned in a shot of espresso sweetened with espresso, according to First We Feast.

Too bad he didn't invent it.

wafflegato.jpg
Courtesy of Portola Coffee Lab
The original Wafflegato from 2012
It's an incredibly blatant ripoff of a collaboration nearly two years ago by the tenants of the SoCo Collection here in Costa Mesa, California. It was a mix of gelato from N'Ice Cream; Dauphinoise, honey and almond from the Cheese Shop at the Mix; espresso from Portola Coffee Lab; smoked sea salt from Savory Spice Shop; and an extra-crisp waffle from the Iron Press.

Ansel is no stranger to controversy: the "Pilgrim Chef" Najat Kaanache Amghiraf, formerly of El Bulli and then of Private Social and Souq in Dallas, claims to have invented the Cronut.

In this case, however, we have obvious prior art: our own article from June 8, 2012, written by former Weekly staffer Michelle Woo, about the Wafflegato.

Shame on you, Ansel.

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21 comments
eek711
eek711

I clearly invented it when I made an affogato and started dipping waffle in it.  I mean, seriously, these aren't even closely related.  The guy who invented the waffle cone can also lay equal claim based on these allegations.  

Eva Hu
Eva Hu

Julio Cesar Quintero

daniel217
daniel217

I'm from OC, and I live in NYC. My irritation at people who talk about cronuts (cupcakes for slightly less basic bitches) almost matches my love of Portola, but I call bullshit.


One chef creating an ice cream that is molded into the shape of a waffle and placed in an espresso to create a cohesive dish is a totally different creative endeavor than taking a waffle from one store, and a scoop of ice cream from another and putting it in an espresso made by a third because the three businesses happen to write their rent checks to the same person.


I get that Orange County is a cultural desert and that The OC Mix is a culinary Oasis with world-class offerings like Taco Maria and Portola, but this is protesting a bit too much. Let Mr Ansel sell his rodent-infested desserts to the Sex & The City box-set owners that line up outside his store. They deserve each other.

Technofancy Eric
Technofancy Eric

Not even close. Ice cream and waffle bits shaped like a waffle is not the same as waffle and ice cream separate in a cup

fishwithoutbicycle
fishwithoutbicycle topcommenter

I often find myself thinking "there's nothing new under the sun"...so when someone says they've invented something "brand new" I'm always a little skeptical...

Matthew Montana
Matthew Montana

Jen Calzada I don't like coffee but it still looks good.

bwade12
bwade12

Honestly, I think a lot of these chefs are just jealous. Ansel's version doesn't look to be a copy of some little shop that put a waffle piece into an affogato. 

moosington
moosington

Yeah, there's a similarity there, but these are different enough, for sure.

debmali
debmali

Really? Those two desserts look like obviously different items, and there's no rule that says two people can't be inspired by the waffle and affogato. And if you follow DA, you'll know that he never claimed to have invented the Waffogato, he just said he created his...and for charity...to help hungry kids. MY GOOODNESS, why don't we go a crucify a guy for trying to do good. The writer of this article - you are the one who should be ashamed of yourself. For pointing fingers and sensationalizing something that is not at all scandal.

Andres Zambrano
Andres Zambrano

Good artists copy, great artists steal - Pablo Picasso

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