Channel People: I Love What I Do
Malcolm McDonald

Channel People: I Love What I Do
Meeting Mr Penguino's, Malcolm McDonald

Malcolm McDonald is the owner of hugely popular ice cream shop Penguino Ice Cream Cafe, in Browns Bay. He has become a real identity in Browns Bay with his friendly personality, customer service and love of what he does. His background is in refrigeration, design, supply and install, all skills he says come in handy now he owns his own ice cream business with his wife Ann.  Channel Magazine wanted to find out some more from Malcolm about the ins and outs of retail of the cold sweet stuff, working in Browns Bay and, of course, the toughest question of all… his favourite ice cream flavour!

COURTNEY BENNETT: What’s the best part about your job?

MALCOLM MACDONALD:  When I see a child run to the counter with the biggest smile gushing with enthusiasm and asking for their best ice cream, walking out completely satisfied and saying: "Thanks Ice Cream Man!"

CB: What is your background in business?

MM: I have been in refrigeration, design, supply and install all my life, which really helps now, as our whole ice cream business revolves around refrigeration and freezing.

CB: Why did you get involved in retail?

MM: Having been involved in the supply of equipment and teaching the techniques to manufacture ice cream, I decided it was time to produce my own and open a shop outlet.  

CB: What does a typical day look like for you?

MM:  I’m up at 5am to pasteurise milk and begin producing ice cream. I watch the sun come up with a good cup of coffee and try have my day's production done by 2pm.

CB: Why is Browns Bay a great place to have an ice cream shop?

MM: This will be our 13th Christmas in Browns Bay. It began with three hard years before we managed to get people to to enjoy freshly made gelato ice cream, but we now have a very loyal customer base on one of New Zealand’s best beaches, and a great community.  

CB: What are the ice cream or food places that you rate highly aside from Penguinos?

MM:  I definitely feel Deep Creek has had a big impact on Browns Bay with their own brew and great food. Bollywood has brought a great atmosphere and curry to town as well.

CB: Do you have a mentor you look to for advice?

MM:  I unfortunately grew up without a father and had to fend for myself, developing a good work ethic, which has resulted in reward and gratitude.

CB: What’s your favourite ice cream flavour and why?

MM:  It changes from time to time. Right now it's banana, as it is made up of fresh bananas, and next month it will probably be mango and vanilla. We have such a choice of flavours.

CB: What do you do in your spare time?

MM:  I love riding motorbikes, I brew my own beer, watch motor racing and like to keep up with the news.  

CB: If I wasn’t running Penguinos for a career, I would be…

MM: Supplying and installing refrigeration to the nation.

Penguino Ice Cream Cafe, 55 Clyde Road, Browns Bay.

By Courtney Bennett

Channel Magazine: Issuu 49 November 2014

Shore People articles by Courtney Bennett