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The Best New England Ice Cream Journey

I love ice cream and hot fudge sauce, and after receiving dozens of suggestions from friends and family on where to find the best in New England, I decided to find out myself. The following link shows the results of eating at 50 ice creameries in two back-to-back weekends.


To my knowledge, nobody has ever visited and rated 50 New England ice creameries, and certainly not in such a short period of time.

Interestingly, most homemade ice creameries used canned hot fudge sauce, which completely ruins the uniqueness of their product.

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  1. I think they should have only listed shops that make their own.

    1. you missed Cote's ice cream in Brunswick, Maine - the best homemade ice around

      1 Reply
      1. re: countrygirrrl

        It's hard to imagine visiting 50 places in two weekends but I'd love to see the rating continued for other places. VT and NH were barely touched.

      2. Thats a lot of ice cream in that amount of time. Whats odd to me is i notice you tried Richardsons brand ice cream at several places yet rated the same flavors differently. For instance you raved about the vanilla at Bedford farms yet when you tried it at Richardsons gave it lower ratings.

        2 Replies
        1. re: hargau

          Yes, that was odd to us as well. We sampled both on the same day and we were in disbelief how incredible the Bedford farms tasted. We unanimously agreed it was the best vanilla we *ever* tasted. I guess we will have to go back in a few weeks to see if it was an anomaly.

          1. re: hotel96

            I may be wrong, but I think Bedford Farms has retained some of their old recipes from when they made their own, and has Richardson's make those for them. I think Vanilla may be one of them.

        2. You missed some great places that were very close to other places on your list! Ready to try again next weekend?
          I'm glad that you gave Bedford Farms and Richardson's the same rating, since Bedford gets their ice cream from Richardson's.

          3 Replies
          1. re: jillso

            Please let me know what I missed. I have already added Benson's to my list, but I look forward to learning about others.

            1. re: hotel96

              Well, I'm not really an ice cream fanatic or anything.....but just off the top of my head..... :)

              Mrs & Me Route 1 Kittery
              Shaker Pond Route 4 Alfred (near Shaw's Ridge)
              Shain's of Maine Sanford
              Crabby Appleton's Route 109 Acton
              Sundaes at the Beach Route 1 Wells
              Len Libby's Route 1 Scarborough
              Deb's Route 9/ 27 Randolph (near Gardiner)
              John's Handmade Route 3 Liberty
              North Street Dairy Waterville and Smithfield

              New Hampshire:

              Blake's Manchester and Salem
              (their ice cream is also scooped at SCOOP DECK, Moody Maine)


              New England Microcreamery Haverhill
              Carter's Haverhill
              Cravings Wakefield
              Mad Maggie's North Andover
              Spruce Pond Creamery Franklin
              Hilliard's Canton and Easton
              Trombetta's Farm Marlborough
              Hodgie's Salisbury and Amesbury
              Maggie Sundae downtown Amesbury

              1. re: jillso

                Maine: Wells: The Scoop Deck -Hands down
                Also Browns near the Nubble Lighthouse in York Beach
                or Goldenrod's Home made

          2. Tubby's (Wayne, ME) really is great, but I think that you were a too negative about Gray's (Tiverton, RI).

            1. In MA....Ron's Ice Cream in Hyde Park(the original place located in a bowling alley) and a second place in Dedham, MA. His was rated 3rd best ice cream in the WORLD by Nat'l Geographic's Ultimate Guide For Travelers. For some reason, I prefer the Hyde Park location, but Dedham is definitely acceptable.

              1. can also get Richardson's at Skinner's Sugar House in East Bridgewater, MA
                prefer Peaceful Meadows in Whitman, though
                never big on Crescent Ridge in Sharon, MA
                their chocolate tastes like dishwater
                good milk, though

                2 Replies
                1. re: theparegorickid

                  I used to work at Brown's in York Beach, ME over 20 years ago.
                  It was much better when Mr. Brown made the ice cream himself. Now I think they get it from somewhere.

                  1. re: rcburli

                    Shain's makes it for them now, supposedly with many of Mr. Brown's old recipes.

                2. John's Handmade Ice Cream on Route 3 in Liberty, Maine is where it's at this summer! A stellar batch of perfectly flavored Maple Walnut....an intense dark chocolate, or a chocolate with almonds and coconut.....Butter Pecan for PECAN LOVERS ONLY, and creamy rich Peanut Butter Crunch (Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Chocolate Cookie Crumbs and a peanut butter swirl). Some of the other flavors include Banana, Coconut, Pineapple, Orange Pineapple, Black Raspberry Creme, and STRAWBERRY RHUBARB.
                  John's is well worth the short drive from Augusta or Belfast, and even worth the 35 minutes from Belgrade Lakes or Camden area in my opinion. With kids, the Lake St. George State Park is just up the road so you can really make an afternoon of it.

                  John's Ice Cream Factory
                  510 Belfast Augusta Rd, Liberty, ME

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: jackattack

                    John's also is being sold (limited selection) at Bay Wrap in Belfast.

                    Another ice cream must: MDI in Bar Harbor.

                    1. re: jackattack

                      John's is some of the BEST ICE CREAM I HAVE EVER EATEN. Seriously, it's insane. The fruit and cream flavors are all excellent, and I understand they are made with local cream, milk and fruit (in season or frozen from the previous summer). The chocolate raspberry is also extremely delicious.

                      1. re: celeriac

                        I stopped by John's this week and had the quadruple chocolate. It was very good but not the best I've had in New England. Herrell's has that honor--at least for intense chocolate flavor. However, tried John's pistachio that my friend had and was blown away; it was great. John's quite a character too.

                    2. How about Wentworth's in Hamden, CT

                      1. Walpole Creamery is amazing

                        1. Just finished off a real-maple-syrup sundae at Deb's in Randolph, Maine. And I'm ready to turn the car around and have another, but we're headed onward to John's in Liberty!

                          1. Bliss Bros. Dairy in Attleboro MA has been around since the 1920s...still going strong..

                            1. Thank you of reminding me of Dr. Mike's in Bethel, CT. I lived there as a child before I moved abroad. I remember the ice cream shop with a screened door in the back of the doctor's office. The chocolate lace with hot fudge ruined me for other hot fudge sundaes; no other ice cream dessert has ever been as decadent and delicious. I live in NYC now, so I should make a trip back!

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: encantada

                                the chocolate lace is still very good and the scoops ae enormous.

                              2. So, where do I get real strong flavorful
                                GINGER Ice Cream ??????????

                                2 Replies
                                  1. re: Peter B Wolf

                                    Bliss creamery ginger icecream in attleboro is amazing. now i have to try walpole's ginger!

                                  2. Too Bad Mother Myricks Ice Cream parlor in Manchester, VT is gone - their home made fudge sauce is splendid - but you can still buy it in their small retail store on 7A. Be sure to try their world's best butter crunch too!
                                    Now for the absolute BEST home made ice cream that is fresh and made in small batches - go to The Chocolate Barn on Route 7A
                                    in Shaftsbury VT. The maple walnut - made with VT maple syrup or their fresh bing cherry (when in season) - is to die for.