By Ed Carroll
Many couples have memories, hobbies or passions that tie into their love stories, but when Zoe Zeid and Josh Tolle were married June 11 at Beechmont Country Club in Orange, they picked out a sweet theme sure to melt even the frostiest hearts: ice cream.
While everyone except the lactose intolerant loves ice cream – and even they sometimes indulge – Tolle wasn’t quite aware of Zeid’s deep passion for the decadent dessert until after they started dating. The couple got ice cream during their first date, yes, but ice cream has blended in throughout their love to the point where an ice cream-themed wedding was the perfect cherry on top.
ICE CREAM DATE(S)
Both Tolle and Zeid, who currently reside in Columbus, attended The Ohio State University during an overlapping period of time, but they didn’t cross paths at school. Tolle, originally from the Columbus area, was back to finish up his Ph.D. programming after graduating. He had just accepted a job offer in Indiana shortly before he matched with Zeid, who grew up in Solon, via the dating app Bumble.
The Bumble app is unique in that only women are allowed to send the first message to men. Zeid, 28, says there were several things that drew her to Tolle’s profile and led her to take the plunge and scoop out a message to him.
“Well, first, (he’s) Jewish, so that was a plus,” says Zeid, a benefits and wellness specialist at Asurint in Cleveland. “It felt like I had been trying out all the dating apps and had found all the Jewish men in Columbus, and he popped up. I was like, ‘oh, OK, someone else!’ I thought (Tolle) was cute, we had a lot of shared interests – we both really like reading. And I was like, ‘OK, he’s cute, let’s see what happens.’ And here we are.”
Tolle, who is director of Jewish education at OSU Hillel, says their first date started “normal.” They got food together, and then decided to get ice cream afterwards. Their second meeting was also fairly standard date fare, playing mini golf together, when Zeid asked if he wanted to get ice cream again.
“I was like, ‘OK, sure, I’m starting to notice a pattern here,’” Tolle, 31, says. “I found out Zoe had this deep love and passion for ice cream.”
A SPECIAL FLAVOR OF LOVE
Zeid says her love of ice cream started before kindergarten. She lost her first tooth eating it, and she particularly enjoyed the small Cleveland-area chain Honey Hut and their chocolate chocolate chip ice cream. She even worked at Honey Hut’s Solon shop for a while, which only intensified her love for it. Zeid is a proud ice cream enthusiast and says whenever she visits a new area, she always wants to check out the local ice creameries.
“Everything in my life is ice cream,” she says. “On our dates, I was like, ‘OK, let’s end it with ice cream’, every single time. He never thought he would eat this much ice cream in his life. As we fell into a rhythm, he realized ice cream was just my thing, and he’s OK with it.”
But Tolle was due to leave for Indiana for at least a year after the summer was over, and neither were exactly sure how things would work out between them. Still, they liked each other and wanted to see what they had, so they kept dating long distance.
“I sort of realized I had to get my way back to Columbus, so that’s why I’m back in my hometown now,” Tolle says. “When I wanted to do my proposal, I thought the most appropriate place to do it would be her favorite ice cream shop (Honey Hut), which was just right around the corner from where she grew up. I called them up, asked if we could open the store a little early to come in and do a proposal. The manager offered to do some role play even. Ice cream’s been there all along and it was, to me, the natural setting for the proposal.”
When Tolle held up the engagement ring to Zeid, it was in an ice-cream shaped ring box – one of her favorite parts of the proposal.
NICE CREAM NUPTIALS
When it came time for Tolle and Zeid’s big day, they chose cocktail napkins with their personalized wedding logo – in the shape of an ice cream cone. They also had an open ice cream bar with Honey Hut flavors chocolate chocolate chip, honey pecan (Tolle’s favorite) and sea salt caramel, where guests could add toppings to their hearts’ desire. Their wedding favors were a hand-bottled jar of sprinkles, with a sticker of their wedding logo. The table centerpieces had flowers in ice cream cones instead of vases. The cake wasn’t an ice cream cake, but it was a gluten free cake with a top that looked like an upside down, melted ice cream cone.
There was at least one ice cream dream that the couple ultimately left in the freezer. Zeid initially wanted to name the tables after ice cream flavors, but decided that would be confusing, and a little too much.
They say the guests loved the theme and especially the ice cream bar. Many of the guests from Columbus had never had Honey Hut ice cream before, and they understood Zeid’s obsession better after trying it. In fact, Tolle now has coworkers hitting him up for their Honey Hut fix whenever he finds his way back to the area.
“I’m just really glad Josh isn’t lactose intolerant,” Zeid says.