One of my favorite things about traveling is discovering local chains. You know, the types of places that might be part of your everyday life if you live in a given region, that you might even forget about in day-to-day life. But as a visitor, it's fun to discover these places--I consider it a great way to pretend you live somewhere for a short time and eat like a local.
So when I passed through Oklahoma City recently, I was delighted to visit Braum's Ice Cream and Dairy Store. If you live in the area, you are undoubtedly familiar with their bright and happy ice cream logo. To the uninitiated--I'd describe Braum's as a sort of regional Dairy Queen, with a market attached. It's cool. The business started in the 1930s in Oklahoma--you can read more about the history here.
Really, for me it was interesting enough just to walk around and visit, but I was even more delighted to find the ice cream highly satisfactory.
Since I only eat sweets that have colors which appear in nature, I chose the Birthday Cake ice cream, which is a perfect sky blue hue. Awesome: the generous scoop was surprisingly low in price, about 2 dollars. I found that to be very welcome, having recently enjoyed fancy ice cream in both Seattle and Philadelphia which cost about double the price. Not that I don't appreciate that these are higher rent cities, but this was pretty nice since I am kind of a cheapskate.
The ice cream exceeded my expectations. It was fluffy, almost marshmallow-like, in its texture; the flavor, however, was still very creamy and full, and the chunks of cake (with frosting, I believe) were wonderful landmines in the creamy cup of ice cream. Ohhhh yes.
A friend tried the Black Walnut ice cream, which I also sampled; it was a very unique flavor which was indeed very black walnutty. If you've ever tried black walnut cake or baked goods of any sort, you know what a wonderful, buttery, spicy something it offers to sweets; this ice cream was a fantastic fall flavor, in this spy's opinion.
So, to sum it up: Braum's is a sweet spot with plenty of locations in the OKC area (including locations in Kansas, Arkansas, and Texas). Give them a try!
Braum's Ice Cream and Dairy Store, various locations; find more info here.
P.S. Like the pictures in this post? I took them on my new Intuition phone, part of the Midwest Savvy Gourmets program from Verizon! Disclosure: I am participating in the Verizon Wireless Midwest Savvy Gourmets program and have been provided with a wireless device and six months of service in exchange for my honest opinions about the product.