After success in ByWard Market, milkshake bar For God Shakes opens second location near Lansdowne

milkshake bar in Ottawa
For God Shakes opened a second location near Lansdowne Park in April. Photo provided.

It seems Ottawans love their sweets, if Sushen Kakkar’s experience is any indication.

Kakkar is the owner of Ottawa milkshake shop For God Shakes, which first opened in the ByWard Market in 2022.

Now, Kakkar has opened a second location on Bank Street just in time for summer. 

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The milkshake bar — which serves a variety of over-the-top beverages, including vegan and lactose-free options — held its grand opening at 1050 Bank St. on April 27. According to Kakkar, there’s already been a positive response from the community. 

“It’s been really good so far,” he told OBJ on Wednesday. “Our neighbourhood is really happy. We’ve had a lot of people coming in and saying, ‘We’ve been waiting for you!’ It feels so good when people have been waiting for you to open.” 

The business opened its original location on Dalhousie Street in the Market in October 2022, inspired by the extravagant milkshake drinks taking over social media at the time. It also responded to an ever-increasing demand for sweet treats meeting certain dietary requirements. 

“One of my friends was in Miami and sending me pictures of these crazy milkshakes,” Kakkar said. “I thought, this looks pretty cool. Why not have this in Ottawa?”

The current menu on the website is enough to make even the sweetest tooth happy. For $14, customers can go all out with such delights as The Joy of Oreo, Lemon Lavender or Mr. & Mrs. Candy. There are vegan and lactose-free options, as well as classic chocolate, vanilla and strawberry shakes. 

For $15, you can go all out with even more extravagant drinks, like Cheesecake Trouble — which has a chocolate base with the flavour of non-alcoholic white wine and an Oreo cookie rim, topped with chocolate cheesecake and whipped cream — or Big Bubble — a bubble gum base with a Smarties rim, topped with whipped cream, cotton candy and bubble gum ice cream. 

Despite concerns at that time about the upcoming winter, Kakkar said customers were drawn in immediately. Just over two years after opening, he said there’s been enough interest and demand to expand. 

“We were getting a lot of texts and emails, asking if we can open in this area or that area,” he said. 

Ultimately, he settled for a unit just steps away from Lansdowne Park. Kakkar said it’s an ideal location with heavy foot traffic, especially during the summer festival season. 

He added that the spring opening date is much more seasonally appropriate this time around. 

“The summers are easy,” he said. “Everybody’s off, people are travelling and everyone is looking for a really cool spot to try.”

The shake shop has also updated its menu with at least five new drinks, many of which are based on suggestions from customers. Other new items include a special for kids, sundaes and, starting May 10, doughnuts. 

“I just want to thank everybody for the support and love they’ve given us,” he said. “We cherish that. And I hope one day, we can maybe open another location.”

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