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best ice cream?

i recently had the most wonderful, classic chocolate ice cream - but it was in savannah, georgia!

the best ice creams i can think of in the city are gelati, like il laboratorio and ciao bella. i also like brooklyn ice cream factory, but it doesn't compare to the stuff i had recently in savannah. so what is the best old fashioned, hard ice cream around?

look forward to hearing!

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  1. I'm still looking myself. Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory, Mary's Dairy, and Emack & Bolio are all good, but I haven't found anything great.

    1. Eddie's Sweet Shop (marshmellow sundae w/ pineapple pistaccio icecream and a vanilla egg cream- outta this world delicious!)
      Forest Hills, Queens, NY

      1. Try Cones, an Argentinian ice cream place: 272 Bleecker St (between Morton Street and Jones Street). Although I think they really excel at sorbets (the pear is delicious), their ice cream is also very good.

        1. Cones isn't hard icecream, but it is some of the best gelato you can have in the city. They also make it fresh daily!

          3 Replies
            1. re: designerboy01

              Cones is super yummy! The Dulce de Leche is fantastic, especially paired with dark chocolate. In the summer there is no place better for sorbet. Try the passion fruit and Andean Blackberry.

              1. re: NYCviaPDX

                yes!!!!!! that is the best!! the dulce and the dark chocolate. normally, i don't even like dulce de leche, but tried it b/c it looked so good. it was amazing!
                the rasberry sorbet is excellent too, very refreshing on a hot summer day. don't bother w/the sorbet or gelato from those places on the street (rocco's, bruno's?)- you'll be disappointed.
                i just wish cones was cheaper.
                and Il Laboratorio de Gelato black mission fig is the best gelato ever.
                chinatown ic factory and sundaes and cones (these places taste very similary, maybe the same owners) have a lot of interesting flavors, but their ice cream is too sweet and gooey for me.

          1. chinatown ice cream factory on bayard (one south of canal) near mott/mulberry. they are the best. i love the almond cookie flavor. they have tons of other "regular" flavors such as lychee, red bean, taro, pumpkin, mango etc. and "exotic" flavors such as mocha chip, mint chip, peanut butter, ect. (their designations not mine) be warned though - take out only.

            4 Replies
            1. re: breadnchocolate

              I second chinatown ice cream factory. You MUST try the "Zen Butter" - amazing.

              1. re: lbw

                Chinatown Ice Cream Factory-Lychee is my favorite!!

                1. re: bobodl

                  i wish i could understand why people like chinatown ice cream factory. i tried their red bean ice cream (one of my fav flavors anywhere) and it was absolutely disgusting. really grainy and icy. it was quite possibly my worst ice cream experience ever.

                  my vote is for brooklyn ice cream, which is absolutely the BEST ice cream ive ever had in my life.

                  1. re: saritaeatsnyc

                    I'm not a big fan of C-town ice cream factory's traditional Asian flavors. I agree that the red bean is grainy and icy. But their pumpkin pie rocks!

            2. I like Il Laboratorio de Gelato in the Lower East Side, as mentioned previously - Creme Fraiche was out of this world. I also really like the Chinatown Ice Cream factory - unusual flavors are excellent - my personal favorite is the green tea/lychee.

              1. Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory- banana split from heaven... enjoy fb

                1. manhattan fruitier serves some great ice cream
                  try the banana lace


                  1. Max And Minas in Queens for hard ice cream.

                    1. There's a great place on 10 st. between 3rd and 4th aves called Sundaes and Cones. It opened up this past summer. I'm wondering if it's related to the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory because they have a lot of asian flavors. Either way, great, rich ice cream. Last time I was there I got something called (I think) an ice cream float: a shake made of one flavor with two more scoops of another flavor in it. I split it, but damn that was good.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: Chef Z

                        I second sundaes and cones and highly recommend the wasabi and the black sesame ice creams. the wasabi gets hotter as you eat it.

                        1. re: Chef Z

                          Black sesame IS good! But that taro flavor is even better.

                          And yea... I think this is related to one of those Chinatown ice cream places... it reminds me of the place on 8th Ave in Brooklyn that closed years ago.

                          1. re: Chef Z

                            Sundaes and Cones is my favorite spot for ice cream. For some reason, I can never seem to leave with anything other than traditional vanilla and rainbow sprinkles :-\. I like to try samples of a few new flavors every time ... but when it comes to an entire cone, nothing hits the spot like vanilla.

                            I'm not a fan of Brooklyn Ice Cream factory nor Mary's Dairy. I found both of them to be too creamy and, for someone who pretty much only eats vanilla, I couldn't taste the bean so much as I'd have liked.

                            1. re: ajgnet

                              Sundaes and Cones is some of the highest-quality ice cream I've ever had. The black sesame was SO intense! And the green tea, which is usually a favorite, was actually too strong for me.

                              Cones would be my other favorite in the city, but I must confess...Ben & Jerry's just put out a chocolate peanut butter ice cream that is kind of to die for - chocolate ice cream with both chunky and creamy, salty peanut butter. It's outrageous if you're looking for heavy, classic ice cream.

                          2. i am still on the hunt for a great old-fashioned hard ice cream (like leopold's in savannah)! in part, i wonder if it is difficult in new york city to keep ice cream cold enough to make it this particular way? just the sheer volume of people (customers) and the demand on electricity might be limiting. that's my new untested theory.

                            i recently tried maison du chocolat chocolate ice cream - it was more like gelato really - and it was terrific!

                            ALSO - very recently at cones - kumquat and johnny walker scotch flavor gelato! amazing! it's double the cost of any other flavor and a dollar for a taste but it's so worth it.

                            1. Sedutto's ice cream was always my NYC favorite, but it's hard to find a dedicated Sedutto's ice cream parlor. If anyone knows of one, I'd love to know where!

                              6 Replies
                              1. re: ballulah

                                I love Sedutto
                                's ice cream too-I believe it is made in San Francisco-I was there a while back and for a short period of time they made coconut fudge which was incredible--where can I get some Sedutto's please???

                                1. re: ballulah

                                  There is a Sedutto's on 1st Ave between 78 & 79 Streets.

                                  1. re: Brian W

                                    There used to be a Sedutto's on 112th and Broadway, but I'm not sure it's still there. I've seen it in other places that are not Sedutto's ice cream parlor's exclusively.

                                    Their pistacchio ice cream was the best I've had since I was in Venice.

                                    1. re: ballulah

                                      It's not--it's been gone for a while.

                                      1. re: ballulah

                                        Agreed! The pistacchio is great.

                                      2. re: Brian W

                                        A place next door to Lincoln Plaza Cinema sells Sedutto ice cream. Bway bet 62-63rd St. It has a Seduttos red neon sign in the window--its been there since I was child come to think of it.

                                    2. how would you describe sedutto's ice cream?

                                      1. Seduttos is "lighter" tasting than the super premium guys.. more like a breyers, less like a Haagen Daaz. And very tasty. I was always a Sedutto fan for good basic ice cream

                                        I'm a third vote for Cones as well - I go there whenever I can.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: weaselrina

                                          Breyers is total air these days. I loved it way back in my youth...bulk. I have found LaSalle
                                          Coffer ice cream is as good if not better from the Breyers I remember in the 50s, yest 50s.
                                          I can't find Sedutto these days, but I liked it...coffee again.

                                          1498 1st Ave, New York, NY 10075

                                        2. Fruzen Glacia - but its not made anymore... 8-(

                                          4 Replies
                                          1. re: Carrie 218

                                            When my husband was in college, he worked at a grocery store. Every day he had a lunch break, he got a pint of Swiss chocolate almond Frusen Gladje. Oink! (Of course, he was skinny as a bean.) It's funny they didn't make it. I'd think it was the cost, but they weren't any worse than what's out there now.

                                            For Frusen Gladje fans:

                                            1. re: luv2bake

                                              oh god, i used to get that flavor all the time. the alternative was chocolate chocolate chip frusen gladje !! we're talkin' early-mid 80's!!!

                                              1. re: jenniebnyc

                                                Yes, early-mid 80's. We actually met at that grocery store. I was in high school, and he was in college. I was cuckoo for a boy my age at the time and didn't date my husband until I was in college. Of course, I didn't know at the time he ate Frusen Gladje on every lunch break or I might have started dating him on the spot!

                                                1. re: luv2bake

                                                  great story ! thanks for sharing.

                                                  we used to eat this during the Summer at our beach house on Fire Island where there are no cars, so walking to the beach and the ice cream store were the bulk of our days. The name of the ice cream store was (is) UnFriendly's!!

                                          2. I'm willing to get shot down on this one, but I adore LaSalle's ice cream (yes, I know they sell it in the supermarkets) on 3rd Avenue in Murray Hill.

                                            I'm not sure if it answers your initial question, which asked for "hard ice cream", but it certainly does for "old-fashioned," at least with respect to what I grew up with in the summer as a kid in Alabama.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: coleyas

                                              I hear you on that one. Cheap ($1.99) pints of decent quality. Ice cream is sold by volume, not weight, and this is where La Salle really comes through in my subjective experience: try holding a pint of Edy's or especially the tasty but airy Breyer's in one hand and La Salle in the other--La Salle is hefty, packing in your money's worth.
                                              I once bought a pint that wasn't filled all the way and wrote them an old fashioned U.S. Postal Service letter and they were super nice in getting back to me and sent me a check for $8--enough for 4 compensatory pints.

                                              I came across your posting because I was exploring the Hunt's Point neighborhood in the Bronx today and I unexpectedly ran across the actual La Salle factory on Randall Ave. Although it was closed on Sundays there was a giant banner announcing they serve breakfast 'til 11 and lunch "all day". Can't wait to see what that's all about. Anybody been there to eat?

                                            2. I hate to state the obvious, but any place in Italy, especially the Baccio gelato. In Montreal, it's definately at Havre-aux-glaces at Jean-Talon Market. With flavours like Blood Orange, you can't go wrong.

                                              1. I grew up in Staten Island and that's where Sedutto Ice Cream was made. I can still remember it as the most delicious ice cream ever. The Sedutto's were an old Staten Island family and the factory was in Port Richmond. The factory is closed now but there still is a Sedutto's Ice Cream Parlor in New Dorp. We can't make a trip back to SI without a stop for ice cream. Try the tortoni or the tartufi - out of this world.

                                                1. For good ole' fashioned fare, Schrafft's in East Hampton is excellent. Movenpick is one of the best ever! Too bad it's only in Europe & Canada. Does anybody know if it's available in NYC or other state-side areas? Also, remember Dolly Madison? Like Frusen Gladje, it went out w/ the '80s and was the best store brand ice cream. I'm getting hungry again and I had Il Laboratorio de Gelato tonight at Whole Foods!

                                                  1. Mitchells in SF at 28th and San Jose....try the queso y maize!

                                                    and the epic peppermint stick!

                                                    1. Slightly off the question, but the olive oil gelato in Otto, Mario Batali's nutty joint for the 'younger' foodies, is outstanding.

                                                      A friend sent me a selection of four ice creams from Jeni's in Columbus, Ohio. They arrived in perfect condition, packed with dry ice, via Fedex. Highly recommended. www.jenisicecreams.com

                                                      - Sean

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: Sean Dell

                                                        I've been dying to try Jeni's salted caramel!

                                                      2. the search continues. i think sundaes and cones is the best i've had so far in this specific category of hard ice cream, but it's still not spot on. (so many of the posted replies above refer to gelato, or just other ice creams that aren't really the hard, old-fashioned kind.)

                                                        i was talking about hard ice cream with a friend from ohio recently, who knew exactly what i was talking about. she said the term is hard dip? (or, hand dipped? can't remember exactly.) and she agreed that it probably can't/won't be found in new york.

                                                        i happened upon the graeter's website while doing a little research afterward, and it looks like *exactly* what i'm talking about. has anyone had it, either at a store or by delivery?

                                                        1. I agree with Duranie -- Eddie's sweet shop is my fave. THey have the best Banana Ice Cream I ever had -- try it with a scoop of their chocolate-- yum

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: Justjenn

                                                            The burnt caramel ice at Montparnasse, midtown east. Amazing.
                                                            Il Lab is great for exotic flavors...Brooklyn Ice Cream FActory had the best caramel sauce I've had.