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Coldstone Creamery...........First & Last Visit

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pearlD May 9, 2010 02:28 PM

We were out for dinner on Friday night at ROMA (Bloor & Gladstone) lo & behold right across the street in the (relatively new ) Tim Horton's was "Coldstone Creamery...Well, great lets have dessert she said!! IN a word "disgusting'... The texture was like eating Crisco but colder..I had the Peanut Butter with pieces of Reeces PB Cup (stale), dreadful chocolate syrup , it was dark brown and a syrup consistency (sure didn't taste chocolate syrup that I ever had)..I forgot what else was mushed into it..dreadful!! My husband had Mint Chocolate Chip and hated it!..We threw it in the nearest litter bin..the heck with the $11.00. A once in a lifetime experience that will never be repeated!! Does anyone have anything good to say about this place?

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  1. Dr Butcher RE: pearlD May 9, 2010 02:39 PM

    I've had hit and miss experiences with Cold Stone in the USA (I haven't been to one up here). The first few times I went I thought it was good, creamy and the mix-ins were perfectly fine. I tend toward the founders favourite or strawberry blonde versions of their signature creations....

    After a few visits, the ice cream texture turned very 'pasty' it even seemed to have somewhat of a pull to it like melted cheese... I've only been once recently and can't say I loved it, but, it wasn't as bad as it has been.

    P.S. I loathe chocolate pieces in ice cream, I find it gets an almost waxy mouth feel to it. I prefer my chocolate at room temperature (or warmer). ;)

    1 Reply
    1. re: Dr Butcher
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      Bottomless_Pit RE: Dr Butcher May 16, 2010 12:15 PM

      I agree I hate any type of solid material, like chocolate pieces in my ice cream. Ice cream is supposed to have a smooth mouth feel, not a random hard object inserted in.

    2. foodyDudey RE: pearlD May 9, 2010 02:46 PM

      What exactly did you get for $11.00? Did it have tiny flakes of gold in it?

      1 Reply
      1. re: foodyDudey
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        pearlD RE: foodyDudey May 9, 2010 03:51 PM

        I kid you not $11. no gold ...for that price they could have a least put a zircon on top!!!

      2. munchieHK RE: pearlD May 9, 2010 03:10 PM

        I visited one in Edmonton once. I was appalled to see that so many people like bad ice cream that they would spread to Toronto. This stuff is just a novelty. The action of folding in all the extras on the slab removes most of the air bubbles in the ice cream that would give it some lightness. You end up with a solid mass of very dubious texture. Don't ever get a tub to take home, as we did. You will need a power drill to serve it once you have put it in the freezer. Coldstone is a fad. I hope it's a brief one.

        21 Replies
        1. re: munchieHK
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          foodsnob14 RE: munchieHK May 9, 2010 04:03 PM

          I've always thought that their ice cream was disgusting and overpriced.

          1. re: munchieHK
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            GK in SO RE: munchieHK May 10, 2010 09:28 AM

            I'm not sure I agree with the statement "The action of folding in all the extras on the slab removes most of the air bubbles in the ice cream that would give it some lightness. You end up with a solid mass of very dubious texture".

            This may be true for Coldstone, or other places that use an inferior product to begin with. I say that because there was a "mom and pop" place near our house in my college days called Rob's Ice Cream (Encino, CA) that used to serve what they called "mix-in's" whereby you chose from their wonderful, creamy homemade ice cream flavors, then mixed in your choice of all kinds of tasty morsels.

            It was always smooth, creamy and chunky! Never the kind of experience that I (and obviously many others) have had at Coldstone. Makes me long for the good old days of Rob's!!

            1. re: GK in SO
              MikeB3542 RE: GK in SO May 11, 2010 08:55 AM

              If it's done right (like at Ferch's, a local shop in Greendale, WI), the texture should be light. The gals behind the counter mix it quickly with a light touch, and don't knead it.

              1. re: GK in SO
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                tgraham17 RE: GK in SO Aug 20, 2010 12:03 AM

                Hi GK are you in Sherman Oaks? I just joined Chowhound so that I could reply to you. I grew up in Tarzana and went to Robb's almost every night! My favorite was cinnamon ice cream with reese's and oreo. Actually they were Hydrox, because they are kosher. A perfect fit for that neck of the woods. I've never actually had Coldstone Creamery ice cream. I walked into one once, all excited by the prospect of a "mix-in" and it looked so bad I left. A few minutes ago I was watching a segment about Coldstone Creamery on The Food Network and I started to think about Robb's. I did a Google search to see if it might still be there and found your post. Thank you so much for a trip down memory lane. I still remember looking in the window to the back room and watching her with those big metal cylinders filled with ice cream. One of the sons let me go behind the counter once and make my own. That was a blast!

                1. re: tgraham17
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                  GK in SO RE: tgraham17 Aug 20, 2010 02:05 PM

                  TG, yes indeed, I am in Sherman Oaks. I'm a true Valley Boy, for sure for sure. I actually moved to Tarzana and went to Reseda High. Yes, those days of Rob's were great and they did have really great ice cream...I had no idea (probably didn't care back in those days) they made their own, but it makes sense. I remember the owner, a lady with dark (perhaps salt and pepper towards the final days of Robs?) hair who was so very nice.

                  You obviously have very discrminating taste when you walked out of Coldstone. At least you didn't waste $6 like I did once.

                  Thanks for signing up to reply. So, where do you go in the SFV for good ice cream these days?

              2. re: munchieHK
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                scarsdalesurprise RE: munchieHK May 13, 2010 02:23 PM

                I used to work at Steve's Ice Cream in Boston back in the 80's - our specialty was mix-ins, and our ice cream was actually really good!

                1. re: scarsdalesurprise
                  Bob W RE: scarsdalesurprise May 14, 2010 04:47 AM

                  Agreed! Steve's was great back in the day. I remember going to the first Steve's in Somerville. The line was around the block (which also held the first Bertucci's!). Boston is the ice cream capitol of the world!

                  Steve's, Cahaly's, Toscanini's, Herrell's, Emack & Bolio's, Bailey's, Brigham's....man, I ate a lot of ice cream back then...

                  1. re: Bob W
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                    rockycat RE: Bob W May 14, 2010 10:08 AM

                    Toscanini's amd Emack & Bolio's...man, those were the days. Toscanini's once ran a batch of mint chocolate chip special for me. Was that ever good! And Emack & Bolio's Key Lime Pie ice cream!
                    Not to dis Steve's or Herrell's, both of which were very good by any standards, but what a tough market to compete in.

                    1. re: rockycat
                      Bob W RE: rockycat May 14, 2010 01:27 PM

                      Toscanini's mandarin chocolate was my go-to flavor. And their hot fudge. Damn. And I really don't even like hot fudge. LOL

                      And now I get to take my kids to Coldstone Creamery. Sob. At least once in a while we go to Baskin Robbins, which is far superior in the chain category. I remember when the first BR opened in Providence. That was a BIG DEAL. Lines down the block. It was the top store in the chain for at least a year.

                      1. re: Bob W
                        invinotheresverde RE: Bob W May 15, 2010 10:35 AM

                        Does BR still exist in PVD? I can't place one.

                      2. re: rockycat
                        L2k RE: rockycat Aug 20, 2010 05:31 AM

                        E&B would call me when they had Key Lime Pie in stock so I could get a quart (or two). One day they called me and said "just to let you know, they've changed the recipe". Went down there got a taste, and never had it again :(

                      3. re: Bob W
                        visciole RE: Bob W May 14, 2010 02:49 PM

                        Are we to assume you've never eaten the ice cream in Italy? Because otherwise you would know that Italy is the capital of the ice cream world!

                        1. re: visciole
                          Bob W RE: visciole May 14, 2010 03:12 PM

                          Ummm, the folks at Berthillon in Paris might have something to say about that (and I have eaten the ice cream at their store on Ile Saint Louis). 8<D It's freaking amazing.

                          How can a whole country be the capital of anything?

                          Many cities have great ice cream, Boston (yes, this is a US centric discussion) just has more of it. Lots more!

                          1. re: Bob W
                            visciole RE: Bob W May 14, 2010 03:21 PM

                            Berthillon IS great; IMHO Giolitti's is better. Personally I don't think any ice cream I've ever had in Boston holds a candle to either. YMMV.

                            1. re: Bob W
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                              LiviaLunch RE: Bob W May 14, 2010 06:49 PM

                              Italy truly IS the ice cream capital - Berthillon's pretension and inconsistency kick it down the list. Any ice cream fan who's been to Ghignoni in Tuscany has had a transcendent experience.

                              Boston offerings never did it for me, got tired of crunching on the ice crystals from poorly tended batches at E&B.

                              1. re: LiviaLunch
                                visciole RE: LiviaLunch May 15, 2010 04:26 PM

                                Where in Tuscany? Another ice cream place to try!

                                IMO your average ice cream place in Italy kicks the rear of anything in the US.

                            2. re: visciole
                              PommeDeGuerre RE: visciole Aug 20, 2010 02:38 AM

                              Ummm, generally speaking, not much ice cream is made in Italy. They tend to make gelato there. Not the same thing, so it would be a liitle tough to call that country the ice cream capital of the world, assuming that any country could be so generalized in the first place.

                              1. re: visciole
                                flueln RE: visciole Aug 20, 2010 06:16 AM

                                Technically speaking, I think Switzerland is the Ice Cream capital of the world, not because they make it, but because they eat the most Ice Cream per capita per annum.

                                1. re: flueln
                                  greygarious RE: flueln Aug 20, 2010 01:03 PM

                                  I thought I had heard that that distinction goes to Massachusetts, but perhaps the title refers only to the USA.

                                  There is a store in Wakefield MA, Cravings, that has a rather typical array of packed ice cream, but they offer a gazillion mix-ins for their soft serve. For example, they'll put a chunk of cheesecake or carrot cake into a machine which chops it up and blends it into vanilla soft serve. Way more choices than Coldstone, for a far better price.

                              2. re: Bob W
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                                jbsiegel RE: Bob W May 15, 2010 04:01 PM

                                LOVED Steve's! Never ate as much at Toscanini's or E&B.

                                Personally, I do like Cold Stone, but my favorite if I'm willing to travel a little bit is Thomas Sweet in New Brunswick or Princeton, NJ.

                              3. re: scarsdalesurprise
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                                BostonCookieMonster RE: scarsdalesurprise May 14, 2010 01:36 PM

                                I'm another one who remembers the original Steve's! Thus, it absolutely offends me that Coldstone has the chutzpah to open in Boston. I think their ice cream is gross and I agree about the weird consistency. Maybe I'd eat it if I lived in some ice-cream desert, but we have SO much good ice cream here, and in many other parts of the country, I just don't get why this place needs to exist.

                            3. s
                              smartie RE: pearlD May 9, 2010 04:34 PM

                              the 2 outlets in Delray Beach Fl have closed down, not sure about the others in Fl. I am not a big ice cream eater but did not like anything I had at either location.

                              1. Bob W RE: pearlD May 10, 2010 06:48 AM

                                My kids love Coldstone. Me, not so much.

                                My daughter always -- ALWAYS -- gets the cotton candy flavor. Frankly, it's disgusting, but she gets whatever she wants. LOL At least my son is an ice cream purist and always gets vanilla, so I can eat his leftovers without gagging.

                                1. amylovescupcakes RE: pearlD May 10, 2010 06:59 AM

                                  We have a Coldstone and Marble Slab here in Texarkana. I prefer Marble Slab, but I am not all that big into ice cream. And like most of you have stated, it is very overpriced. For that main reason alone, I hardly go to either, unless my friends and I are out and I get out-voted :) What I have had at Coldstone has been pretty good (I usually order simple things like sweet cream or birthday cake ice cream with rainbow sprinkles) but I can do without it, considering the price. I would rather have my homemade strawberry shortcake, or some freshly baked cookies.

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                                    RosemaryHoney RE: pearlD May 10, 2010 12:05 PM

                                    In general, the mass-market ice creams here in the US are inferior, compared to the stuff in Canada (Kawartha Dairy,even Chapmans). Coldstone is just an extension of that weird, fake American ice cream product. I have no idea what they put in it, but I agree that it's kind of like frozen Crisco. Unfortunately, it's here to stay in the states...people LOVE it. Marble Slab (I think they are primarily in the southern US) has a better, more authentic ice cream product, but it looks like TH has contracted with Coldstone, which means they are about to infiltrate Canada!

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: RosemaryHoney
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                                      drsnacks RE: RosemaryHoney May 13, 2010 09:08 AM

                                      Obviously there's plenty of good ice cream represented in the U.S. (what a silly assertion), Coldstone just isn't one of them (it's being based on a gimmick that draws attention away from the ice cream itself should prevent its lack of quality from being a surprise). Haagen Daz is probably the best national chain; Breyers is fine - otherwise there are plenty of good local shops.

                                    2. j
                                      jujuthomas RE: pearlD May 12, 2010 07:49 AM

                                      i haven't eaten at one, but my best friend and her husband have a few times. Until one of them had an allergy problem because of the cross contamination on the slab!

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: jujuthomas
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                                        ClaireWalter RE: jujuthomas May 12, 2010 10:47 AM

                                        Downtown Boulder, Colo, briefly had a Cold Stone Creamery. When it was still a novelty, there was a ine out the door. Once the novelty faded and people began to consider the taste and texture, the romance w/ it also faded and it closed. However, there are numerous others in metro Denver and elsewhere in Colo.

                                      2. mcsheridan RE: pearlD May 12, 2010 12:26 PM

                                        "Does anyone have anything good to say about this place?"

                                        No.
                                        I went exactly once, with an open mind, but a plan. I knew they had Banana ice cream. That was the plan. The first add-in was free; I think each additional add-in was $0.75 (at the time; the charge may have gone up since then.) So, I went for Banana with pecans and caramel in a waffle cone. I think the total was around $7.00+.

                                        I was Deeply unimpressed. Verdict? Overpriced and overrated. I was not surprised when the location closed before a year passed, but shocked when it recently reopened. (Under new management? I don't know; I'll never go back to find out.)

                                        4 Replies
                                        1. re: mcsheridan
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                                          HungryinBmore RE: mcsheridan May 14, 2010 02:24 AM

                                          By the time you got your computer going and sat down and typed your rant you could of made it to the Grocer and picked up a container of Haagen-Daaz. And been happy.

                                          1. re: HungryinBmore
                                            mcsheridan RE: HungryinBmore May 14, 2010 06:11 PM

                                            And believe me, I had similar thoughts after experiencing Coldstone. A) I could have bought Two pints of Haagen-Dazs; B) I could have bought a Quart of Baskin-Robbins; C) I could have bought a package of Dove Bars.

                                            Any of those choices would have made me happier than Coldstone did.
                                            (Still hoping for someplace to make/serve decent banana ice cream, though. ;)

                                            1. re: mcsheridan
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                                              ClockworkOrange RE: mcsheridan May 14, 2010 09:38 PM

                                              No such thing as a pint of Haagen-Dazs. They are now 14 ounces. Just sayin' for those that don't know.

                                          2. re: mcsheridan
                                            greygarious RE: mcsheridan Aug 20, 2010 12:58 PM

                                            I stood in line at the one near me a few months after it opened. As I looked at the menu board, I realized that I'd be paying over $5 for a cone....and walked out.

                                          3. lulubelle RE: pearlD May 15, 2010 05:02 AM

                                            There is a Coldstone in my old neighborhood in Chicago. It did great business until a Dairy Queen opened up down the block; now there is a line out the door for Buster Bars and dipped cones, and the Coldstone is pretty empty.

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                                              anonymouse1935 RE: pearlD May 17, 2010 05:19 AM

                                              " IN a word "disgusting'... "

                                              You hit on the right word. Are they still popular? They're packing up and leaving in this area, thank goodness.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: anonymouse1935
                                                oliviasaru RE: anonymouse1935 May 17, 2010 06:57 AM

                                                About four years ago I had my first experience at Coldstone, and it was very good - German Chocolate Cake ice cream, Yay! But it was too expensive to become a habit, and last year when I went out of my way to buy one of their ice cream cakes for a birthday, it was so revolting I threw 2/3 of it out. We have plenty of other local, delicious options that won't break the bank, so never again!

                                              2. c
                                                christy1122 RE: pearlD Aug 20, 2010 07:13 PM

                                                Amen....there is one across from where I work...went in for a simple vanilla plain milkshake...took 2 sips....thought, this does not taste right....there was something wrong with it....threw it out...never again...

                                                1. c
                                                  cupcakez RE: pearlD Apr 21, 2011 06:44 PM

                                                  I hate everything there except the cherry cheescake milkshake. Yum!

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