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French Vanilla Ice Cream?

I am in search of a very rich French Vanilla ice cream. The more egg yolk and the more yellow the better. I remember a long time ago Godiva used to sell a great one in their boutiques.

Anyone have any suggestions?

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  1. Not French Vanilla, but Dr. Bob's makes an amazing, and intensely rich (something like 16% butterfat) Tahitian Vanilla that can make you quiver and forget that ice cream can actually taste good in chocolate, or any other flavor for that matter.
    http://www.drbobsicecream.com/retail/...

    Laloo's Goat Milk Ice Cream has makes an intense and creamy vanilla ice cream called "Vanilla Snowflake" but not French. It's worth a look.
    http://www.laloos.com/index.php

    If you want just French Vanilla, there are really only two places in SoCal that I can recall that make it in its traditional custard-y form, Fosselman's and Syrup Desserts. Both are ok, but nothing to write home about.

    9 Replies
    1. re: ipsedixit

      Thanks, I may have to try Dr. Bobs.

      My favorite ice cream of all time and I can't even find a decent one. : (

      1. re: A5 KOBE

        McConnell's of Santa Barbara. I'm not sure if Gelson's carries that flavor but Sweet Treats in Encino can probably order it for you if they don't already have it.

        Trader Joe's French Vanilla is pretty good, made by Double Rainbow.

        1. re: jackattack

          2nd the Trader Joe's brand. Couple that with their frozen apple blossoms and mmmmm

          1. re: RoxyGrl

            Trader Joe's is labeled as French Vanilla, I find it rich and delicious (a wonderful base for chocolate milkshakes). It is $3.99 for a quart and $5.99 for a half gallon.

            1. re: RoxyGrl

              I find TJ's version very chemically & prefer Breyers Natural

              1. re: Kalivs

                Breyer's Natural isn't french vanilla. It doesn't contain egg yolks and has tara gum as a thickener and stabilizer. TJ's has guar gum and carob bean gum, but it does contain egg yolks as french vanilla should.

                1. re: Feed_me

                  Funny enough, TJ and Breyer both are pretty underwhelming for french vanilla.

        2. re: ipsedixit

          Just grabbed a pint of Dr. Bob's Tahitian Vanilla at the Farm Store at Cal Poly. One of the better Vanilla ice creams out there and pretty rich. Thanks for the rec. This will do for now but I am still search for a more custard like French Vanilla.

          1. re: A5 KOBE

            Glad it worked out for you ... kind of.

            Thick, custard-y ice creams are sort of on the wane. Too bad, in my opinion.

          1. FYI - Cook's Illustrated did a tatste test comparo of "supermarket" vanilla ice creams.

            And Ben & Jerry's Vanilla came in "highly recommended". I

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            Ben & Jerrys
            11740 San Vicente Blvd Ste 101, Los Angeles, CA 90049

            8 Replies
            1. re: foodiemahoodie

              They no longer make French Vanilla from what I understand.

              1. re: ipsedixit

                You may be right - but according to the Ben & Jerry's website - if you put in flavor locator and my area code (in Santa Monica), you get a lot of places that allegedly carry their vanilla.

                http://www.benjerry.com/flavors/flavo...

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                Ben & Jerrys
                11740 San Vicente Blvd Ste 101, Los Angeles, CA 90049

                1. re: foodiemahoodie

                  There's no French Vanilla listed on that Product drop down list. Only regular vanilla.

                2. re: ipsedixit

                  Sorry. A bit of confusion here. Cook's comparo was NOT French vanilla, only vanilla. But they included both kinds. And Ben & Jerry's came out on top (with a highly recommended rating.) I thought the difference was that French vanilla uses egg yolks. Ben & Jerry's vanilla also has egg yolks listed in their list of ingredients. I haven't tried it. I usually go for Breyer's Natural French vanilla. Tastes great to me.

                  The Cook's comparo. The one's they tried. With 21 people tasting. (alphabetical order)

                  Ben & Jerry's Vanilla
                  Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla
                  Breyers Natural Vanilla
                  Edy’s Grand Vanilla
                  Friendly’s Vanilla
                  Häagen-Dazs Vanilla
                  Turkey Hill Vanilla Bean
                  Wells Blue Bunny All Natural Vanilla

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                  Ben & Jerrys
                  11740 San Vicente Blvd Ste 101, Los Angeles, CA 90049

                  1. re: foodiemahoodie

                    It's not just the presence of egg yolks, but how the yolks are used. French Vanilla is custard based.

                  2. re: ipsedixit

                    Maybe French Vanilla isn't as popular as it used to be, even Baskin Robbins took it off their menu a couple years ago.

                    1. re: monku

                      I blame the Frozen Yogurt craze for this.

                      1. re: monku

                        As I recall some 31 flavors have the French Vanilla and some do not. The 31 Flavors on Western used to carry it.

                  3. Handel's in Redondo Beach makes a pretty good french vanilla. Although its been a while since I had some.

                    2 Replies
                      1. re: Petey McNichols

                        I go by the Handel's in Ontario all the time. They have good ice cream, but not what I am looking for. I want a rich ice cream with lots of egg yolks.

                      2. One place that I've been very impressed with for hitting the mark on flavors is Sweet Rose Creamery in Santa Monica/Brentwood. I've never tried their vanilla, and I don't believe they carry French Vanilla, but it may be time to drop a few hints and give a couple of nudges there.

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                        Sweet Rose Creamery
                        225 26th St #51, Los Angeles, CA 90049

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: bulavinaka

                          I have been interested about this place as well. Brentwood is so far from my house though and I need a good excuse to get down there.

                        2. I actually found a decent french vanilla at Thrifty's in Rite Aid. They sell it in the 1.75QT size in the freezer section. I did not even know they made this flavor until I saw it the other day and bought it out of curiosity. I just wish they used real vanilla bean in it, but still a very good french vanilla in my book.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: A5 KOBE

                            Hard to beat the Thrifty's ice cream for the price, though.

                              1. re: A5 KOBE

                                Not French, but have you tried the vanilla at Mother Moo?

                                1. re: ipsedixit

                                  Yeah, Mother Moo and Carmela are actually one of my favorite vanilla ice creams. I also think Graeter's makes a good vanilla as well. Just wondering if a more 'yolky' version has popped up anywhere.

                              2. The California Club.

                                It's egg-y, rich, creamy, great with toppings... Just had some recently.

                                2 Replies
                                  1. re: ipsedixit

                                    BYOGP (Bring Your Own Grey Poupon)...

                                1. McConnell's has the best French Vanilla I've had in years, though its availability is pretty hit-or-miss in local supermarkets. They're a Santa Barbara company, and are only carried in limited locations--so lucky us we live in SoCal!

                                  FYI they recently changed their "French Vanilla" to "Golden State Vanilla," but it's the same, and the cheeky explanation for the change is on the tubs.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: crocodileguy

                                    Good to know, I will have to try this out.

                                  2. Strauss vanilla is my favorite but it's vanilla bean, not French vanilla. I find it at Whole Foods in LA. It's organic, very expensive but is like mother's milk!