Ice Cream

I have to admit that when it comes to ice cream, I am fairly powerless.  I think that when you find the right brand and the right flavor, it is pure bliss.  And while I have done my part to explore as many undiscovered gems as possible during my travels, there is still much work to be done.  Fortunately for me, this is a hunt that will last as long as I can lift a spoon to my lips – and that is pretty encouraging.

When recently searching for “best ice cream” in Google (part of my regular due diligence), a year-old article from Forbes Traveler came up as the top hit.  I perused this document with much interest.  The article references a number of places, some of which I have heard.  Among them:

Cincinnati: Graeter’s
Cambridge: Toscanini’s
San Francisco: Bi-Rite Creamery
Santa Barbara: McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams
Wisconsin: Sibby’s Organic Zone Ice Cream
Boulder: Glacier Homemade Ice Cream

I have been familiar with Graeter’s for a while, and have always been interested.   McConnell’s is no stranger to my supermarket aisle.  The others are clearly more regional, and thus do not ring any bells. 

I know there are more treasures out there, and my aim is to try something new and delicious.  What I propose is to either order from one of the above vendors, or from a place recommended by a reader who seems particularity passionate. I will then chronicle my findings here.  The product does not have to be ‘ice cream’ per se, as I would happily embrace frozen custard, gelato, or any other cold dairy treat.  I do not discriminate, except on quality.  It also has to be shippable.

Let the great ice cream chase begin!  I await your recomendations…

H/t to Forbes Traveler for the top picture.

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18 Responses

  1. Mary

    You must experience Tillamook ice cream. Its made in Northwestern Oregon and is available on the Northern west coast (Oregon, Washington, Northern California).

  2. Rachel

    Like Hans, I’ve also had Ted Drewes, but am not as much a fan of the format (they mix the ice cream with the toppings/syrups). The base flavor is vanilla, and that is quite delicious.

    Toscanini’s is better. Cambridge is a terrific city, so I hope you get to visit, preferably in the summer– good for ice cream and warm days!

    I would say Glacier falls somewhere in between these two for me. Based on my sampling so far, this must be some list. Kuddos, JT — thanks for the post.

  3. JW

    Penn State creamery ice cream wins hands down! If Ben and Jerry (yes, THAT Ben and Jerry) thought it was a great place to learn their craft, its good enough for me!

  4. Elizabeth Smith Brigham

    Ted Drewes wins out by far. The pints that they sell at Schnuck’s and Dierberg’s in STL come in Vanilla, Chocolate and Strawberry. I’m partial to the Vanilla and Strawberry myself. There’s NOTHING better than a hot fudge (the real deal) sunda (yes, Sun-da, not Sundae) with Vanilla frozen custard, nuts and a cherry on top after a July Cardinal’s baseball game. The line is generally around the block, but the operational efficiency at Ted Drewes is beyond incredible.

    On another note, a STL transplant has tried to replicate Ted Drewes concretes in NYC in Manhattan. I believe the place is called the Snack Shack. He does give a shout out to Ted Drewes on the menu.

  5. Rose'sLime

    Toscanini’s has been widely lauded for its ice cream and falvors and sometimes piloried for Gus’s slipshod business practices – last year they had to ask patrons for charitable donations so they could pay their taxes and stay in business. Also, from time to time, they have a big freezer and only six different flavors available – with four of them being some variation on coffee.

    That being said, they have some flavors that are unmatched anywhere – Burnt Caramel in particular, but also cake batter and cocoa pudding.

    I live in Cambridge half way between Tosci’s and Christina’s and for daily dips prefer Christina’s.

    Meanwhile I used to live in Philly and can endorse not only the Penn State creamery (worth a trip to State College), but also Bassets in the Reading Terminal. It’s the place my grandfather used to take my father… been there so long there are two inch deep divots in the marble from where people have been leaning their forearms for 100 years.

  6. jamie

    if you live in texas, blue bell ice cream is the only way to go. to eat any other brand is pure blasphemy.

  7. Gus Rancatore

    Amy’s Ice Creams in Austin. Cool stuff and cool people in what can be a very hot Texas town.

  8. bob

    ted drewes all the way!!! all other places are gross. do yourself a favor, try ted drewes. pleaseeeee. its wayy betterr.


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