Saturday, July 18, 2009

Seattle Ice Cream Recommendations

Fulfilling the pregnancy stereotype, I have become a connoisseur of ice cream. (But I'm still not down with pickles, just so you know) Three local companies have emerged as clear favorites. It should not be a surprise that they source their ingredients locally, their flavors are seasonal and at least one is totally organic. I've gone from someone who didn't eat ice cream at all to having a stash in the freezer and lining up for 20 minutes for a single dip cone. Wetus needs the calcium--yeah that's it.

Empire Ice Cream is based in Queen Anne and they make appearances at local Farmer's Markets (UDist & Ballard) as well as being sold in-store at Eat Local on Queen Anne. Last year I tried their Strawberry ice cream and it was the best fruit-based ice cream I've ever tasted. This summer it's back so try to get your hands on some. There are only 5 ingredients in it: strawberries, cream, eggs, sugar and milk. Simply awesome. And they also take risks with their flavors and crazy ones like Beet Sorbet, Bacon Ice Cream. But other more mainstream standouts in their line up are the Italian Plum, Blackberry/Loganberry and Sweet Cream & Caramel.

Parfait is a very new mobile ice cream experience that has thus far camped out in front of the 2 Cafe Fiores in this town (in Queen Anne & Ballard). Ken & I sauntered up there today and waited in line for a bit with a bunch of people who also must have read about this ice creamery on wheels on the neighborhood blog. Ken asked me if this hearkened me back to when I was a kid and there were ice cream trucks cruising the neighborhood. Sort of. In my early childhood, I did live in a suburb with ice cream trucks that came through but I was afraid of them. At 6 or 7, I was too nervous to go out to them or flag them down to stop for me. Then we moved out to the country and no one was driving any ice cream trucks out there. But it is a slice of Americana that most people can identify with or at least understand. Parfait's ice cream is all organic and very tasty--but not cheap so that keeps me from over doing it.

Peaks Frozen Custard is a mid-west inspired ice cream treat. "Frozen custard is richer and creamier that standard ice cream because of a higher butterfat content, slower production time and less air blended into the mix." Source
It's a very rich experience that should be rare given it's cholesterol-raising potential but to know that such a decadence exists in Seattle is delightful. They have a special different flavor each day and the basic flavors of vanilla & chocolate. But it's really all about the toppings and the specialty sundaes that they make.

Make a point to try at least one of these this summer--I'm sure there's something good you've done to deserve it.

1 comment:

mdr said...

So funny, I'm the opposite - I used to LOVE ice cream, but it makes me sick now! I can't wait until 4.5 months from now when I can eat it again! When we come visit next time in Seattle we'll have to check out these places with you if you can still stand ice cream at that point. :)