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Entries in frozen treats (4)

Monday
Feb202012

Cold and Sweet: Custard from Culver's, Home of the ButterBurger

Culver's custard

If you live in the Midwest United States, you are probably aware of a chain called Culver's, where they have two main specialties: something called the ButterBurger, and frozen custard.

Here's a ButterBurger. It's served on a buttered bun. Oh yeah.

Now, I was already halfway in love with them based on this stellar roster of menu items, but the deal was completely sealed when I tasted their custard.

I opted for the caramel-cashew sundae, which was prepared to order, and was--I'll just say it--way better than I thought the custard would taste at a chain restaurant. Cold, creamy, and clearly fresh, the custard itself was a solid base for the buttery caramel and crunchy cashews. The sweet, slightly salty toppings atop the rich custard made for an extremely addictive combination--this sundae made me wish the ice cream weekend could be longer.

Culver's custard

I wouldn't necessarily say this custard would rival that of some of the custardists I've come to know and love in different parts of the country such as Kopp's, Old School Custard in Seattle, or Scooters in Chicago, but as an on-the-road choice, Culver's would definitely be my pick for a sweet treat.

Culver's custard

Culver's, multiple locations throughout the US (mostly in the midwest); online here.

Tuesday
Aug162011

Gelat-O'Clock: Gelato from Procopio Gelateria, Seattle

I don't know if I have told you this in so many words, but I have been having a Gelato Awakening in recent months. I'd consider my visit to Via Dolce Gelato in Leavenworth the kickoff to this awakening; since then, I have been sampling the sweet and cold stuff at as many places as I can. I'm just in love with that tiny spoon, and find it the ideal strolling-while-eating food. 

And most recently, I tried Seattle's Procopio Gelateria.

The establishment, perched in the shadow of the Pike Place Market, is named for Procopio dei Coltelli, who is said to have opened the first gelateria in Paris in the 1600s, who may not have invented the stuff, but is credited with, you know, making it a "thing".

Well, clearly this appealed to my confectionery and sweets-history obsession, and the gelato, made using the same time-tested traditional methods, reflects a love and respect for the sweet treat's storied history.

I made the wise decision of pairing the seasonal Cherry gelato, which was creamy, pleasingly pink, and redolent of rich, deep cherry flavor, with the vanilla, which was flecked with vanilla beans and had a deep, rich vanilla flavor that worked like sweet love with the cherry. The consistency of the vanilla flavor was more to my liking, but when paired together, they worked beautifully.

The flavors couldn't have been more spot-on, and I look forward to trying more seasonal flavors at this sweet spot in downtown Seattle.

Procopio Gelateria, 1501 Western Ave., Ste 300, Seattle; online here.

 

Monday
Jul112011

Sweet Chill: Gelatiamo, Downtown Seattle

Hello, Gelatiamo.

My name is CakeSpy, and I am going to talk about the experience of eating your delicious gelato for a few minutes.

For those who may not know Gelatiamo, it's in sort of an odd spot--downtown, on a block of 3rd avenue with a hub bus stop, and therefore, a lot of, shall we say, very interesting people watching. It's like a little pastry oasis surrounded by chain restaurants and mall-type stores.

But when you walk inside, you'll be so glad you did. There are rows and rows of pastries (including respectable cream puffs, which I have known and loved in the past), but because I have been suffering a recent gelato obsession, finally I visited at long last to try their signature product.

After looking at the rows and rows of delectably tempting flavors, I settled on a scoop of coconut, and a scoop of chocolate. Pretty normal, but good flavors to see what they were all about, I thought.

The coconut, for me, was the clear winner--coconutty and rich and creamy, with little flecks of coconut inside of the creamy gelato which offered a nice texture. The chocolate was pleasant, but I felt like it was a bit dull next to the coconut. Does this mean that I should have just paired my flavors better? Possibly. 

Overall, this was a highly pleasant if not earth-shattering gelato experience; I will most definitely be returning to try out more flavors to find my perfect match. 

Gelatiamo, 1400 Third Ave., Seattle; online here.

Gelatiamo on Urbanspoon

Tuesday
Jul052011

Hello, Bella: Gelato from Ciao Bella, San Francisco

Gelato is delicious, right? This is, like, fact.

Ciao Bella Gelato has a lot of things going for it. They have a great quality product, interesting flavors, and a good distribution throughout the US—you can buy their products in upscale markets all over. I think they do a pretty good job of maintaining a high quality product while also being readily available in upscale markets throughout the us, making for an accessible gelato experience we can all share. 

While for me nothing necessarily sets them apart from other gelato I have tried—it is not, like, close your eyes and dream gelato—it is a solidly enjoyable experience, and what it does have at the Ferry Building is the exquisite experience of being able to enjoy your little cup of creamy joy on the dock looking at the bay bridge in the distance. There are some experiences that simply can't be beat, and where the gelato might not sparkle above and beyond all others on its own, the experience makes it more than worthwhile.

Ciao Bella, various locations (I visited the Ferry Building location); online at ciaobellagelato.com.

Ciao Bella on Urbanspoon

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