Skip to main content

Will Stop for Ice Cream

Remember our road-trip tradition of ice cream? You know you're a fanatic when you actually plan your stops around ice cream shops, right?!?

Well, we are just back from a filthy but fabulous camping trip around northern California. 1200+ miles. 10 days. 4 state parks. 1 national forest. Miles on foot. Miles and miles on bikes. Tons and tons of memories and - most importantly for this post - 4 planned ice cream stops.

As we traveled and tasted, we decided that we needed a new scale for judging these goodies. It's not like we're comparing Penny Ice Creamery to Baskin Robbins...all of the stops were organic, seasonally -flavored creations. And all were comparable in price, so we knocked that out of consideration. Also, we were evenly split on ice cream versus gelato.

We ranked them based on (1) innovative flavor combinations; (2) execution of said flavors; and (3) texture. Here are the stops, in order... [then I'll give you ranking at the end!]

Arcata Scoop
1068 I St 
Arcata, CA 95521
(707) 825-7266

What we tried: Earl Grey, Honey-Vanilla-Lavender, Coffee, Coconut, Dark Chocolate, and something Blackberry


Cool notes: The decor was deliciously unique...from the milk carton chandelier to the giraffe balançoire [short for battements en balançoire, "battements like a seesaw"].

From their website: Fresh ice cream and sorbet that is made on the premises in small batches. We support our local farmers and other businesses by using local, seasonal ingredients as they become available. We use the highest quality organic ingredients we can find to make the popular flavors like strawberry and cookies & cream, as well as the more unusual... vanilla honey lavender, toasted sesame, jalapeno... Don't want dairy? There's always two non-dairy options.

Pazzo Marco Gelateria

What we tried: Dark Chocolate and Caffé  Espresso


Cool notes: It was one of the best kept secrets of Gualala. Even the guy at the visitor center had no idea what I was talking about. I guess I should have clued in when their company website only gave a post office box for an address instead of a street address. But we finally located some!

From their website: Each week from our micro creamery in Gualala we create a new assortment of gelato flavors using local farm fresh organic milk, cream, free range chicken eggs and the best in-season ingredients. Find our Gelato at the Surf Market, the Sea Ranch Lodge – Black Point Grill, Anchor Bay Thai Kitchen, Trinks Cafe and from our gelato cart on weekends during the summer months in front of the Surf Market.

Three Twins San Rafael
641 Del Ganado Rd
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 492-8946

 What we tried: Dad's Cardamom, Horchata, and Sea Salt Caramel


Cool notes: The splashes of lime green added a cheerful je ne sais quoi to the entire experience. And I was still spry enough to sit at the mini kid table with Dylan. Funniest thing I heard a dad say as he walked in with his two daughters in two,  "There's a line today, please don't ask for 8,000 samples, okay?" I didn't give my boys that caveat and we - shamelessly - held up the line. But the gal behind the counter and all of the customers behind us were patient.

From their website: By sourcing milk and cream from within 17 miles of our California factory, and carefully mixing and freezing each batch to ensure a smooth texture, we dish up extraordinarily fresh and tasty flavors. Making great ice cream isn't a costing exercise for us, so we make our recipes based on what will deliver the best flavor – not by trying to arrive at the lowest cost. Our vanilla is richer, our chocolate is bolder and our coffee is more intense than most. We think you'll love the results!

Lush Gelato
Epicurius Garden (across the street from Cheeseboard Pizza)
1511 Shattuck Ave           
Berkeley, CA 94709         
(510) 666-0644   

What we tried: Bleu cheese, oatmeat stout, Cowgirl Creamery creme fraiche, marscarpone-balsamic, cantaloupe sorbetto, sea salt caramel, dark chocolate, burnt sugar-rum, honey-ginger, rum-horchata, and lemon cookie


Cool notes: A fitting addition to Berkeley's Gourmet Ghetto. I can't believe I'd never found it before. Walk out the side and enjoy your cones (or cups) in alongside a babbling brook and Asian-style rock garden.

From their website: We make our Gelato and Sorbetto from scratch in small batches using organic and local ingredients whenever possible. We make our cones fresh daily. Our cups and spoons are biodegradable

Of the four stops, lots of noteworthy bites - the Earl Grey at Arcata was divine. Three Twins' cardamom. That's all I have to say. And the cantaloupe sorbetto rivaled anything I ever tried in Rome. But overall 4th place belonged to Pazzo Marco; 3rd place went to Three Twins; the title of runner-up was awarded to Arcata Scoop...

and 'Top Scoop' honor belongs to...drum roll, please...

Lush!

The only thing we didn't agree on: if Lush unseated Penny Ice Creamery as our family favorite. We were torn 50-50 on that one.

Comments

  1. You have discussed an interesting topic that every body should know. Very well explained with examples. i have found a similar websiteice cream cart hire visit the site to know more about gelatocarthire

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Quick Pickled Red Onions and Radishes

If you've been reading my blog for even a short amount of time, you probably know how much I love to pickle things. I was just telling a friend you can pickle - with vinegar - or you can ferment - with salt - for similar delicious effect. The latter has digestive benefits and I love to do that, but when I need that pop of sour flavor quickly, I whip up quick pickles that are ready in as little as a day or two. I've Pickled Blueberries , Pickled Asparagus , Pickled Cranberries , Pickled Pumpkin , and even Pickled Chard Stems ! This I did last night for an upcoming recipe challenge that requires I include radishes. Ummmm...of course I'm pickling them! Ingredients  makes 1 quart jar radishes, trimmed and sliced organic red onions, peeled and thinly sliced (I used a mandolin slicer) 3/4 C vinegar (I used white distilled vinegar) 3/4 C water 3 T organic granulated sugar 1 T salt (I used some grey sea salt) 6 to 8 grinds of black pepper Proce

Jamaican Stew Peas #EattheWorld

  Here we are at November #EattheWorld event. What a year this has been! This challenge has been one that gave us some excuse for virtual travel as we've been sheltered-in-place with the coronavirus epidemic for most of 2020. So, we've been able to read about different parts of the world and create a dinner, or at least a dish, with that cuisine. This Eat the World project is spearheaded by Evelyne of  CulturEatz . Read more about  her challenge . This month, Evelyne had us heading to somewhere tropical: Jamaica. I have actually been to Jamaica, but it was almost thirty years ago...and it was just a jumping off point for the rest of our Caribbean exploration. I don't remember eating anything at all! Pandemonium Noshery: Pumpkin Rice   Culinary Adventures with Camilla: Jamaican Stew Peas  Amy’s Cooking Adventures: Jamaican Chicken & Pumpkin Soup   Palatable Pastime: Jamaican Jerk Chicken Burger   Sneha’s Recipe: Jamaican Saucy Jerk Chicken Wings With Homemade Jerk Seas

Hot Chocolate Agasajo-Style {Spice It Up!}

photo by D For my Spice It Up! kiddos this week, I was looking for an exotic drink to serve while we learned about saffron. I found a recipe from food historian Maricel Presilla that mimicked traditional Spanish hot chocolate from the 17th century where it was served at lavish receptions called agasajos . When I teach, I don't always get to shoot photos. Thankfully, D grabbed my camera and snapped a few. Ingredients serves 14-16 1 gallon organic whole milk 3 T dried rosebuds - or 2 t rosewater 2 t saffron threads, lightly crushed 3 T ground cinnamon 3 whole tepin chiles, crushed 2 vanilla beans, split lengthwise 1 C organic granulated sugar 1 lb. bittersweet chocolate Procedure In a large soup pot that can hold a gallon plus, combine milk, dried rosebuds (or rosewater, if you are using that), saffron threads, ground cinnamon, chiles, vanilla beans, and sugar and warm over medium heat till it steams. Whisk to dissolve sugar, then lower heat an