Did you know that July is National Ice Cream Month? An entire month focused on the celebration of the best of the frozen confections. A month that invites you to enjoy a simple cone, a scoop, a taste or a maybe a bowl, with a little whipped cream, some hot fudge and caramel toppings, bananas, some strawberries and a cherry.
According to the International Dairy Foods Association, President George Washington spent approximately $200 for ice cream during the summer of 1790. I am not sure what $200 would be in 2014 dollars, but that is a President that knew how to budget for summer desserts. President Jefferson had an 18-step ice cream recipe, they say it was similar to a Baked Alaska, way, way before there was an Alaska. Dolly Madison served strawberry ice cream at President Madison’s second inaugural banquet. Americans have a long history with ice cream.
With the forecast in Reno calling for 100 degree plus days this week, it is time to think about how you will celebrate this most important of National commemorations. Thanks to the Reno Moms Blog contributors, I have a list of just some of many places in the Biggest Little City to enjoy an ice cream this July and all summer long.
Treats for the Whole Family
Many of my summer ice cream memories were enjoying a Sidewalk Sundae (or even a simple popsicle), while sitting on the curb in a still damp swimsuit as the ice cream truck’s tune faded onto the next block. Reno’s IceCycle Creamery is a traditional ice cream cart on a tricycle. They serve amazing, handcrafted ice cream like Cookie Monster and Slasher Flick with Sriracha caramel and serve them at different locations from the MidTown Farmers Market on Thursdays, Reno Street Food on Friday nights and a Pop Up Shop at Polyesters on Saturday evenings. Check their Facebook page for their next location and flavors.
A few weeks ago at the Bacon, Bourbon and Brews festival, I tried Lazy Sundae’s Bacon Sundae with bacon, caramel and candied pecans. It was fantastic, I am still dreaming about it. The truck is all over the city and serves sundaes, floats and Banana Splits. Catch them at the Feed the Camel Wednesday food truck event at the McKinley Arts Center. Because sometimes you just need to celebrate the fact that you made it to Wednesday.
Lake Tahoe’s Red Hut Cafe came to Reno a few years ago bringing their famous waffles and amazing Red Hut Rosti, which is a hash brown covered with melted cheese, ham or bacon with sour cream and green onions. Their old fashioned soda fountain has a menu of simple cone, floats, malts, shakes, Italian sodas, a frozen hot chocolate called the Sierrandippity and ten different sundaes. Red Hut Cafes and Soda Fountains can be found in Lake Tahoe, Carson City and Reno.
Date Night Ice Cream
Sometimes mamas need a date night with sushi and ice cream, sometimes mamas need to go to Sakana on Town Square Way in Somerset. Open just a few months, this sushi spot is getting a reputation for its fresh fish and unique rolls, but also for its ice cream. The owner’s ice cream making hobby means flavors like cinnamon, think sweet cream meets a churro, coconut, my grandmother’s favorite, butter pecan and coffee along with vanilla, chocolate and green tea, are the perfect ending to a sushi meal. And you can get just ice cream because sometimes you need a handpicked pint or quart to go.
I love tableside dining, from that Caesar they toss with the right amount of anchovies to a Steak Diane flambe’. The Atlantis Steakhouse has a completely new ice cream tableside experience with 321° Below Ice Cream. Watch this video to see how in minutes, liquid nitrogen transforms luscious ingredients like heavy cream, vanilla beans, nuts, pure extracts and premium chocolate into a perfect scoop of ice cream from pistachio and double chocolate chip cookie to French vanilla, rum raisin or white chocolate lavender. Flavors change weekly, which may make multiple visits necessary.
Special Ice Cream Mentions
- The Gas Lamp – Their double cut pork chop makes The Gas Lamp in MidTown a great choice for dinner, but their housemade ice creams make it a must for dessert Try the almond roca and coffee toffee, or just a scoop of their vanilla on one of their cobblers.
- Yogurt Beach has a ton of different frozen yogurt treats and toppings. But they also have frozen custard, a rich, silky ice cream cousin. It is an indulgence, especially when you add a topping, or maybe two.
- When my sister-in-law comes to Reno to visit, a trip to Swensen’s Ice Cream on 3340 Kietzke Lane is required for a scoop of the Sticky Chewy Chocolate on a cone or in a float, shake or sundae.
- If you have a taste for gelato, you can find it at Whole Foods Gelato Bar (they sell it by the scoop at their coffee bar) or in the Atlantis Bistro Napa.
But one of my very favorite places to have ice cream is at home using this super easy, no cook recipe. It is an easy as pour one of those ice cream mixes into the ice cream maker for about 20-30 minutes, once it has reached its frozen creamy goodness, let it sit in the freezer for a few hours (if you can wait). Then we grab bowl and settle in to watch a mystery on PBS or I might relax with a cone while in the hammock.
Where will you be celebrating National Ice Cream Month? And what is your favorite flavor?