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Apr 12, 2008 12:21 PM

carvel ice cream???

uhhh, how come i've never, ever heard of this place???

BTW looks like a stable company.....
2004 FOCUS Brands is created; Carvel joins Cinnabon and Seattleā€™s Best Coffee International to form new food service company.

anybody got any reviews??? looks like a fun place to hang out.. kinda like an old fashioned soda shop place.

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  1. Always had one in my town growing up in Jersey. Fond memories of ice cream birthday cake in June; ah...chocolate "ants" and gel-writing. Now that I'm in Iowa, no more Carvel, Dunkin' Donuts, or 7-11.

    As for a place to hang out, my Carvel didn't have any seating (at the time, anyway; may have changed by now).

    1. It's been a long while since I've been to a Carvel, but I can't recall any of them looking anything like that picture. They're all over the place in New York and Connecticut, as far as I know.

      2 Replies
      1. re: shellyesq

        I grew up in Westchester County (just north of the Bronx), which is where Tom Carvel started. Then, they were very plain-Jane road side stands that dished out soft-serve ice cream. None of them ever looked like that!

        1. re: cavandre

          I grew up in Westchester too. My grandpa apparently used to know Tom Carvel. Too bad he never went into business with him! The Carvels I've been to don't look like that one either! Usually not enough seating on a hot summer night when it was crowded. They used to make great ice cream sodas, but the particular branch we went to stopped making them correctly for some reason, they just didn't taste right. I always liked just getting a simple soft chocolate or vanilla cone, sometimes with chocolate sprinkles. It was a popular place to go after softball games in elementary school. I haven't been to one in awhile. I now live in Dutchess County and there is one that I pass on the way home from work. I had my first ice cream of the season the other day, but I admit I passed up Carvel in favor of ice cream from Joe's Dairy Bar, which has that kitsch roadside appeal!

      2. There's a Carvel in Milford, CT but it's one of the '60s era dinosaurs. Except that it's enclosed, versus the old walk up to to a window setup. But colorful chairs and seating, that's something totally foreign to my Carvel experience(s).

        Since I grew up in CT and heard Tom Carvel doing commercials ("Hi, Folks, this is Tom Cahr-vel..." in a really gravelly voice) all through my youth, it just never occurred to me that someone wouldn't know the brand. Not to mention the Cookie Puss and Fudgy the Whale cakes, Wednesday is Sundae (two sundaes for the price of one on Wednesday) etc.

        1. You've never heard of it because its not that good. Be thankful and save yourself the disappointment. You might as well go buy some bryer's, bluebell, braum's (way better than previous) or whatever the heck else is the staple in your part of the country. Carvel is nothing special.

          1. They've been around for a BILLION years here in the NY/NJ area. (Actually, I think they started in the 30s.) But it's my understanding that they don't operate in all areas of the country. (Their presence is much stronger in the Northeast.)

            I love them. Good solid no frills ice creams (with their specialty being soft serve) and related products (cakes, novelties, etc.) They don't have 100 toppings or mix-ins like the other chains, but they have the basics.

            Most stores here in Jersey don't have places to sit down in the store, but I went to a store in Jacksonville, FL about three or four years ago (the first in the area at the time) and they had a few tables and a cool sprinkle machine for the kiddies. (In fact, the Jacksonville store I went to looked pretty similar to the store in the picture in the OP's link.) Most of the stores that have been around for a while, however, are much less fancy and are blasts from the past.

            Most stores also participate in the "Wednesday is Sundae" promo. Regular soft serve sundaes are buy one get one free on Wednesdays.

            It may not be the world's greatest ice cream, but it's still delicious. I had lots of great times hanging outside my local Carvel as a kid.

            BTW, it's amazing how many major chains are unknown in certain parts of the country. (It blew my mind the other day when I discovered that Dunkin Donuts has no stores in California! )