We Live in the Golden Age of Ice Cream

I tried some absolutely outstanding ice cream yesterday that reminded me of yet another reason I feel lucky to be part of Generation X:

We are living in the golden age of ice cream.

In the 1970s, we had a few basic flavors to choose from: vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, chocolate chip, mint chocolate chip, and rocky road. There were a few shops like Baskin Robbins that marketed some scary stuff like Rum Raisin, but if you were just getting ice cream at the supermarket or some other ordinary location, those were your choices.

There also wasn’t as much science to ice cream back then. The term mouthfeel was still relatively obscure. It all seemed perfectly good back then because… ICE CREAM!!! … but compared to what we have today, it was, as the kids say, “supes basic”. In the 1980s, along came the frozen yogurt craze which pointed to how much untouched frontier was ahead of us. Shoutout to Humphrey Yogart, by the way — the world’s best named frozen dessert shop. Shoutout also to Aaron Cohen’s Gracie’s, which not only has excellent ice cream, but the world’s only bathroom dedicated to Dolly Parton.

Anyway, we’ve learned so much about fat content, texture, and flavor combinations since then that we have practically invented a new food group.

A few years ago, during a trip to the underrated gelato mecca that is Croatia, I had a variety which tasted different than anything I’d ever tried. It was a “fig yogurt gelato” from a little shop in Cavtat. I usually stay away from frozen yogurt because it’s generally not as good as ice cream, but this was intriguing. A great flavor (fig), combined with a beautiful tartness (yogurt), along with best texture for frozen desserts (gelato). It was outstanding, and I have not been able to find anything like it ever since…

Until yesterday!

Behold, Hellenika Cultured Gelato:

A Pint of Hellenika Cultured Cream

I don’t think I will ever purchase another brand of ice cream at the store ever again. It is the most perfect ice cream I have ever tasted. The creamiest mouthfeel, wonderful flavor combinations, and that little bit of tang which reminds you this is no ordinary substance.

Hellenika is a small creamery run by three Greek/Australian siblings with a single location in Pike Place Market in Seattle. Until recently, it was not available in stores, but you can now pick up pints in Metropolitan Market.

If you live in Seattle, you need to try this immediately.

If you don’t, you should try to get someone to mule you some in dry ice. Hopefully one day it will ship on Goldbelly.

Don’t get me wrong. I like a good low-grade Blue Bunny mini-cone as much as the next person, but I feel like we’ve passed through some sort of intergalactic hyperspace with this gelato. The future is now. Get this to your freezer any way you can. 🙌

2 comments on “We Live in the Golden Age of Ice Cream”. Leave your own?
  1. Alex Rainert says:

    I truly love the Snack Beat and will keep an eye out for this at our local spots who tend to carry this kind of stuff.

  2. Loi Laing says:

    As an ice-cream connoisseur I don’t think I’ve ever been more jealous of another human being. I really need to get to Seattle.

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