Category: Frozen Yogurt

Best Gifts For Ice Cream Lovers

Everyone loves ice cream, but packaging it up for a birthday or anniversary may give you more of a mess than a thank you. And my brother’s solution, which was to Venmo me $50 and say go eat some ice cream, is absolutely amazing but also not the most visceral kind of gift-giving. So if you need some ideas on gifts for the ice cream lover in your life, this should get you started!

Read more

Spill The Beans

This is a gargantuan coffee shop. There’s so much seating! But beyond the extensive coffee menu is an ice cream menu, and I was told by my cousin that it was a must-see.

Spill The Beans, Greenville, SC | In Search of a ScoopSpill The Beans, Greenville, SC | In Search of a Scoop

Mostly coffee but amazing ice cream here!

So on my day to visit Greenville, South Carolina, I made sure to stop by. This isn’t my usual ice cream review. They make vanilla and chocolate soft serve and yogurt and then carry an incredible variety of mix-ins. Similar to a Blizzard at Dairy Queen, you choose your base and your mixins.

I had fun watching the soft serve machine. And at $.50/topping, the price was reasonable for a downtown location. I went with a kiddie, which was $4.05 before tax and tip.Spill The Beans, Greenville, SC | In Search of a Scoop

To be honest, I didn’t have high hopes when I walked in and realized how it worked. I expected mediocre ice cream with decent mixins.

I was so wrong! Here’s what I got:

Spill The Beans, Greenville, SC | In Search of a Scoop

Yes. It was as good as it looks.

Chocolate ice cream base with Nutella and marshmallow – Wow. The base was ridiculously smooth. The chocolate definitely didn’t taste healthy – which is a good thing! It’s not watery, as soft serve can be, but it also isn’t heavy, so it doesn’t hide your mix-ins.

They threw in giant chunks of hazelnut/Nutella style chocolate, absolutely outrageously good. The marshmallow was super finely chopped and well blended.

This was so delicious! I highly recommend a visit here.

I have also heard wonderful things about the gelato place in town, so I will be back for sure!

If you enjoyed this, you might also enjoy reading about the amazing frozen custard I found on the Outer Banks!

___________________________________________________________________________________

Supporting My Blog

I am truly grateful for your support of my blog! You can help by doing any or all of the following:

  • Become a patron of my work!
  • Make purchases via my Amazon website links. There is no additional cost to you, and a portion of the proceeds can support our travels. Begin your Amazon search here.
  • Make other purchases using my affiliate links. Signing up with Dosh is a great way for everyone with a smartphone to support me, and I also have options for aspiring virtual assistants as well as occasional and full-time RVers to save money. This link will take you to my other travel page with my husband – we’ll have one here soon!
  • Listen to, subscribe and review my theater comedy podcast, Finishing The Season!
  • Subscribe to this as well as my other travel blog, RossAndJamieAdventure, and recommend our work to your friends and family.
  • Take music or theater lessons (group or private) from me and my husband, either in person or via Skype at TinyVillageMusic.com.

In Praise of a Store Brand

Just a quick note, today. I love finding homemade ice cream in my travels. Going out for ice cream is literally one of my favorite things. But my budget and my waistline don’t allow me to go out every day. And much as I may try to convince myself to make other choices, I just love having ice cream every night, so I usually do.

I have a lot of favorite ice cream brands, including Tillamook, Gifford’s and Breyer’s. But I’ve really been enjoying trying store brands! It’s an easy way to save money, and often it’s really good too!

At Walmart, of all places, we discovered the tastiness of the cheekily named Hashtag Chocolate. And at King Soopers/Kroger’s, we’ve found that while their peppermint and mint ice creams aren’t worth the time of day, their chocolate-based ice creams, of all sorts, have really knocked it out of the park. Be sure to try French Silk – it’s outrageously indulgent. On the East Coast, we’ve always enjoyed Hannaford ice cream and frozen yogurt.

I’d love some insight into which companies make store brands for the respective stores. I’m quite curious, and I wonder if it varies by flavor.

Also, pro tip: if you’re prone to eating too much ice cream, get some adorable tiny ice cream bowls. That way you can stuff them to the brim and feel indulgent.

Do you ever get store brand ice cream? And do you have any favorites to share?

Erin McKenna’s Bakery, Orlando

This week, I’m mostly straying from the pattern by covering Erin McKenna’s Bakery in Orlando, Florida! This is absolutely the place to go for people with food allergies and sensitivities and if Mark Bittman says they have the best donuts in the world, who am I to argue?

Erin McKenna’s can also be found in N.Y.C. and L.A., and it prides itself on being gluten-free, nut-free (besides coconut), dairy-free, soy-free and egg-free. It’s all vegan and it’s all delicious!

Eliza’s Bakery, Orlando, FL | In Search of a Scoop

Honestly, the soft serve is my least favorite of their offerings. When I bought this, it cost $7 for a large, though it did come with toppings – I got caramel and brownie. The toppings make it really fun, but as someone who can tolerate dairy, coconut milk soft serve just tastes like a decent soft serve yogurt.

Eliza’s Bakery, Orlando, FL | In Search of a ScoopEliza’s Bakery, Orlando, FL | In Search of a Scoop

The bakery, which is located at Disney Springs, the shopping destination at Disney World, is tiny, with only two small tables outside and none inside. But there’s beautiful outdoor seating on the water just a few feet away, and trust me – it’s all about the food here.

Be warned that these doughnuts don’t keep well; your best bet is to eat them quickly or refrigerate them.

They also offer cookies, cupcakes and cupcake tops, teabreads and much more.

Eliza’s Bakery, Orlando, FL | In Search of a Scoop

Oh. And they also have bagels! My only wish is that they’d carry smoked salmon or smoked salmon cream cheese. The bagels and the fake cream cheese are delightful!

So if I didn’t make it clear, the next time you’re at Disney World, you should visit Eliza’s. And if you have food allergies, this is your new favorite place. You’re welcome!

p.s. Thanks for supporting my blog by doing your usual online shopping via my Amazon affiliate link!

Walrus Ice Cream in Fort Collins

My latest ice cream adventure was in Fort Collins, and it’s an adorable location worth visiting. Not only do I have a local ice cream option in Fort Collins, but there is gelato and frozen custard as well, and with Boulder and Denver nearby, I have lots of local ice cream options to try within an hour or two of here. I’m glad I’ve got all summer to check it all out. 

Read more

Ice Cream & Music at Emack & Bolio’s

Ross Malcolm Boyd onstage at Emack & Bolio's, Albany, NY | In Search of a Scoop

Ross Malcolm Boyd onstage at Emack & Bolio’s, Albany, NY

Last September, on our way through upstate New York, my husband Ross was eager to play an open mic. He found one in Albany, and though it took some doing to find a safe and free place to leave the RV for a while, we did just that before heading into the city to perform.

Well, as it turns out, Ross had chosen an open mic at an ice cream place. And it wasn’t just any ice cream place – it was one I’d read about before!

Emack & Bolio’s is full of personality, with super-premium

Books and gifts at Emack & Bolio's, Albany, New York | In Search of a Scoop

Books and gifts at Emack & Bolio’s, Albany, New York

ice cream at locations in five states and in many Asian countries too! It has an artsy, indie vibe, at least in Albany, New York, and they also sell coffee and pastries there. This location hosts live music every week, including an open mic, and they also have a fireplace, a garden patio and a neat selection of books and gifts.

I was so excited that after we played our three songs (and were asked to be the featured artists whenever we return to the area!) we got to get ice cream.

Extra ice cream at Emack & Bolio's, Albany, NY | In Search of a Scoop

Extra ice cream at Emack & Bolio’s, Albany, NY

Plus, when they misunderstood my initial order, I ended up with some extra ice cream…so yes, I had two bowls of ice cream here! The flavor report:

Pumpkin – It’s delicious, smooth and tastes like real pumpkin, as it should. You’ll need to love pumpkin to enjoy this. It’s subtle and lovely.

Chocolate Moose – This is a smooth chocolate – they have a few different chocolate flavors. It’s an outstanding, rich flavor! Maybe top 3 or 4 chocolates I’ve had so far?

Vanilla Bean Speck – This is a very “real” tasting vanilla. I love when you can study the vanilla bean. Yum.

Bananas Foster – This is cinnamon, with chunks of roasted banana. Really delicious!

I found the texture to be fabulous, with high marks across the board here. It absolutely lived up to the hype. There’s tons of indoor seating as well as a great outdoor stage with tables, and the live music is definitely a draw.

Pricing was on the higher side, but appropriate for a city like Albany and the clearly higher-quality ingredients they’re using. This is a must-stop if you’re in the area!

p.s. Thanks for supporting my blog by doing your usual online shopping via my Amazon affiliate link!

Ice Cream From Royalty in Milton, DE

Okay, royalty-based ice cream is a little silly. But this is from the same person who lived in a townhouse sandwiched between Dairy Queen and Burger King, leading for us to refer to it as the Royalty House.

But ice cream isn’t silly. It’s delicious! King’s Homemade Ice Cream Shop in Milton, Delaware is on a cute street in a cute town.

img_6402-2

The reason we made the visit was to visit Dogfish Head Brewery (well worth the visit, even if you don’t drink beer!) but this ice cream shop, with “homemade” in its sign, caught my eye. It turned out to be the shop I’d seen reference to in a couple of articles under a slightly different name, so I’d never been able to locate it!

My husband, Ross, indulged me and said yes, go ahead and get some ice cream. So I did!

They were happy to let me combine multiple flavors in a small cup. Their portions were ample, and they had fantastic service, letting us try as many flavors as we wanted. They also offer some really fun-sounding yogurts.

img_6418
It’s an adorable ice cream parlor – but there is no bathroom, so be prepared! They sell exclusively ice cream – no soda or coffee – and it’s a really nice place if you’re looking for an old-fashioned ice cream parlor. Here’s what i settled on.

Butter Brickle: This has a delicious butterscotch flavor. It might be a little cheap-tasting? But I really enjoyed it.

Scoops of ice cream in a paper cupMocha: This is a strong and distinct coffee flavor, with chocolate covered expresso beans. Yum!

Dutch chocolate: This is a very pleasant, rich medium chocolate flavor. It has a light and smooth texture, and it’s soft.

Overall, all of the ice cream was great, though not life-changing. The ice cream was soft so it will melt quickly if you take it outside in the heat.

After visiting another less stellar Delaware ice cream parlor, I was delighted to stumble on King’s Homemade Ice Cream. Thanks for the treat!Two 50s style tables and Norman Rockwell paintings near an ice crema bar

p.s. Thanks for supporting the blog by doing your usual online shopping via my Amazon affiliate link!

How Much Ice Cream Can You Fit Into a Week?

Do you ever ask yourself this question? Do you struggle with the desire to stay healthy while eating lots of ice cream? I certainly do. 

This past week I flew back to New Hampshire. The combined stress of travel, mild family drama and life combined with my ice cream-craving brain in a major way. Suffice to say that I ate too much dairy, sugar and fat. And when I thought about how to write about it, I realized just how intense it was. It’s like I scheduled it out with a desire to eat as much as possible. 

So be shocked, or use this as a guide for yourself on how to eat too much ice cream and sweet treats. 

Wednesday – A small hazelnut soft serve frozen yogurt with raspberries at Pinkberry at the Baltimore airport. A kiddie size Wild NH Black Bear – vanilla with red raspberry swirl and chocolate raspberry truffles – from Lang’s, who serve Blake’s ice cream. 

Thursday – A large with cotton candy, coconut cream and Wild Maine Black Bear, a red raspberry ice cream with dark chocolate truffles, for lunch at Jordan’s Creamery. 

Friday – A dish of Coconut Bliss‘ Cherry Amaretto (coconut-based, dairy-free) with fun toppings at a pre-wedding dinner. 

Saturday – A dish of Round Top’s Salted Caramel ice cream with hot fudge at a wedding dinner.  

Sunday – A small Wild NH Black Bear with hot fudge at Lang’s after dinner. 

Monday – A scoop of ice cream with two flavors, Moose Tracks (vanilla, amazing fudge ripple, peanut butter truffles) and Peppermint Stick, at Merrivale Ice Cream next to The Pizza Man

Tuesday – A small dish of Milk ( low-fat frozen yogurt) at Pinkberry with lunch. A small hot fudge shake at Sonic with dinner. 

Have you ever eaten this much sweetness in a week? What does your dream ice cream week look like? Tell me about it!

Odd Fellows in N.Y.C.

This summer’s quick jaunt to New York City was fabulous. We fit in two shows and three ice cream places! (If you missed it, I reviewed Morgenstern’s last week.) The second stop of our trip was Oddfellows, nestled near Playwrights Horizons and other off and off-off-Broadway theatres. 

We knew from the moment we saw Odd Fellows that they were unique. They’re famous for their ice cream sandwiches, but we were already pretty full from our first ice cream stop! So we settled on sticking to ice cream. 

Lime Tarragon – It’s a sorbet! Ross thought it tasted like Pickety Place, known for using their own herbs in their lunches (and also where we got married, incidentally). I loved this, it’s unreal! The tarragon wakes you up and takes this to the next level. It isn’t watery at all…much more than I expected from sorbet. Almost creamy. 

Green Matcha – Ross tried this but passed. He said it just wasn’t the flavor he expected. 

Olive Oil Strawberry – The strawberry is very real, almost more sorbet-like, and it’s woven with olive oil ice cream which is really complex and has a real aftertaste of olive oil. It wasn’t my favorite but it’s super interesting, rich and creamy. Ross described it as everything he is looking for in an ice cream!

Our single scoops came to $4 each with tax, which seemed reasonable for New York City. They rotate flavors and keep eight in stock.  We were delighted to see ice cream and frozen yogurt trucks throughout our travels. If you have a favorite, let me know! And finally, it’s not ice cream-related, but we saw the amazing show Shuffle Along while we were in town. Phenomenal cast and production team, and an incredible story that brought back memories from my independent study in high school, where I wrote about the depiction of African-Americans in American musical theater. A few photos are below! 


p.s. Thanks for doing your usual Amazon shopping using my affiliate link!