SUMMER is HERE! And while that means copious amounts of chilled rose and vihno verde, it also means my other vice in life: ICE CREAM. When it’s hot, I crave it any way- cone, cup, soft serve, or straight outta the pint! It’s the perfect friend date, cheap date (gents take note) or solo date because yes, you do deserve it. I’ve curated a mostly LA list, so scroll to find your perfect match!
The Bigg Chill: this must be the place!!! perfect post (or pre) Apple Pan, if you want THE BEST tart soft serve-it’s my favorite in LA-they have vegan cookie dough and numerous other toppings and a rotating list of flavors. No shame that it’s bookmarked on my phone. CASH ONLY!
CVT: simple AF and only 3 choices: chocolate, vanilla or a twist. My preferred method is twist in a cone with rainbow sprinkles. They’re a food truck, so check for their location. Usually available on Sundays during the Melrose Trading Post Flea Market.
Pressed Juicery Freeze: soooo you want to be “healthy” and are into the whole non-dairy thing. no shame, I have those days. GO HERE, it’s *just* their frozen juice. No added sweeteners!
Malibu Farm: kind of a given if you go to Malibu Pier, you need a little tart yogurt in life, because it’s Malibu after all and everything’s a little more beach-y and natural *wink wink*.
Jon and Vinny’s: save room for dessert!!!! Or just swing in, and get their twist to-go. Served with little wooden spoons so it’s almost as good as MilkBar’s cereal milk soft-serve…almost.
REGULAR ICE CREAM
Salt and Straw: they’re originally from Portland, so you know it’s good shit. I just checked their instagram and their July flavors were posted early. OMG. I need to get over there now. This shop always has about 15 flavors that never leave, and a monthly series (July’s is an ode to berries) Expect long lines, but the friendliest staff- and sample everything!
McConnell’s: this Santa Barbera based shop gets my “elevated basics” stamp. They take everyday flavors and make them siiing, like: Churros con Leche, Chocolate covered Strawberries, Salted Caramel Chip and Turkish Coffee. Go here if you’re in DTLA and need a fix! 1 of 2 LA locations is a Grand Central Market which makes for a great foodie date.
Sweet Rose: LA based and oh so yummy. A friend introduced me to their salted caramel (which they top with a sprinkles of salt!) and I was hooked. They use local ingredients and it’s part of the Rustic Canyon restaurant
Jeni’s: there’s something about Jeni’s that makes me want to spend all day in the store. Maybe it’s because they are always making waffle cones- hello scentgasm- but the interior is crisp and all the flavors are written out in a font that I wish was my own handwriting. They always have seasonal flavors, right now I want to try “Sweet Cream Biscuits and Peach Jam” as well as “Birch & Marshmallows”
Carmela: all organic and based in Pasadena, Carmela is home to my favorite “vanilla”, theirs being “brown sugar vanilla bean”. And for those of you who like lavender- they have a “lavender honey” that is so
summery and light.
Top Round: being from the midwest and more specifically having family in Wisconsin, means frozen custard was a daily treat. If you happen to be in Door County, Not Licked Yet, was our favorite spot. But seeing as that is miles away, if you need your frozen custard fix, head to Top Round for the good stuff. It’ll be pretty hard to resist the rest of their menu, so go with an empty stomach.
Sprinkles Ice Cream: Sprinkle’s cupcakes were the ones to start the cupcake trend so at their ice cream shop, you can order a sundae smashed between a cupcake. You read that right. Ice cream plus cupcake. Even better, they do a version with their mini cupcakes so it feels less guilty.
ICDC: you can get an affogato sundae with a house-made DONUT. what?! sugar/caffeine buzz for sure. Also their colorful shop makes for a good ‘gram.
Little Dom’s: nutella. hot. fudge. need I say more?
ICE CREAM SAMMIE
Churro Burrough: Who doesn’t love churros?! I’m a cinnomon lover, so when I heard there was a place that sandwiched ice cream between two churro patties I was SOLD.
Milk: Oh Milk, how I love thee! They are known fo
r their macaroon ice cream sandwiches and they are amazing. Personal favorite is the fruit loops flavor with cereal milk ice cream. Lines are long at the Beverly shop, so if you’re on the East Side, check out their Silver Lake location.
CoolHaus: Started by Natasha Case and Freya Estreller, these two badass ladies combined their love of food and architecture. They hit up Coachella in 2009 with their truck and the rest is history! Check out their twitter for truck locations or stop into one of their brick and mortar locations.
WHEN IT’S 11PM AND YOU DON’T FEEL LIKE LEAVING YOUR HOUSE
Frozen Bananas+PB+Cocoa Powder: this is my poor (wo)man’s go to when I’m having an ice cream craving, but I don’t want to get in my car and drive. Just combine 1-2 frozen bananas, a spoon of PB and a spoon of cocoa powder and blend. A splash of almond milk also helps if you don’t have a Vitamix.
Phew, I know that was a long one! Still on my radar to try are: After’s Ice Cream, Magpie’s Soft Serve, Cream and Cauldron.
What are your favorite ice cream shops?!