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Mar 13, 2011 10:23 PM

Looking for Luigi's Italian Ice

Help! My boyfriend is from New England and loves Luigi's Italian Ice. I'm not seeing it in the grocery stores here (I didn't expect to), but am hoping someone has seen it at a grocery or specialty store.

In the meantime, I'm going to take him to every Italian ice shop that I can find.

Thank you

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    1. re: monku

      Looks like the closest place is:
      38019 47TH ST E

      1. re: monku

        I think they have it at 99 cent stores. Some kind of Italian ice anyways

      2. i miss it also. it just doesn't exist out here. there was a vendor at the eagle rock farmers market (that no longer exists) that had his own homemade italian ice that was close to NY italian ice except that i wasn't a fan of the texture- it was too creamy or something. not sure if you can find him by googling, but it was as close as i've found to luigis as far as flavor goes. i do miss those cups and how if you turn the ices upside down it was frozen sugar liquid!

        10 Replies
        1. re: Clyde

          I found that Joe's Italian Ice in Garden Grove is a good facsimile of East Coast ice... also DiDio's in Santa Monica.

          Joe's Italian Ice
          12302 Harbor Blvd, Garden Grove, CA 92840

          1. re: Das Ubergeek

            I was disappointed with Joe's Italian Ice. The people working there were very friendly but the ice itself didn't have the right consistency and found several big chunks of ice. The only place to get real Italian Ice is Lemon Ice King of Corona. There is no other place like it in the world. The temperature and consistency of the ice coupled with the variety of flavors is so unique. I also tried the place on Montana and was disappointed by them as well.

            Joe's Italian Ice
            12302 Harbor Blvd, Garden Grove, CA 92840

            1. re: js76wisco

              Yes, js76wisco is absolutely right.

              FLB, I think I've had Luigi's while visiting my sis in Brooklyn. If your boyfriend is used to eating real Italian ice made by real Italian Americans in real US Italian enclaves, he's going to be disappointed. I'm giving you fair warning.

              Lemon Ice King in Queens is just spectacular. Ask your boyfriend if Luigi's is like this-- the texture is so velvety soft, smooth and creamy, you'd swear there was fat hiding in there somewhere. That's Lemon Ice King. I'm a purist-- I prefer to stick with the natural juice ones and avoid the scary artificial flavored ones. But really, it's about the silky texture moreso than the flavor.

              DiDo's ice was chunky like a finely textured granita. I had a blood orange one. Tasty enough, but absolutely NOT proper Italian ice. Plus, the shop guy (a middle aged guy) was kind of an ass.

              I also once tried Joe's and was similarly disappointed (Joe's seems to use a lot more artificial syrups whereas DiDo is more about using fresh juices).

              I'd give the edge to DiDo, but honestly neither one qualifies as a proper Italian ice in my book.

              Mr Taster

              1. re: Mr Taster

                Oh, and just to clarify (since this is the LA board), Lemon Ice King is not in Corona, California but rather on Corona Ave. in Queens, New York.

                Mr Taster

                1. re: Mr Taster

                  And to further clarify....

                  The italian ice I had in Brooklyn was "Uncle Louie G's" (Luigi's, get it?) So if that's the case and your boyfriend is in fact looking for the J&J Foods/Superpretzel manufactured Italian ice and not a local shop, I'm afraid I (still) can't help you. (I'm not familiar with this particular product).


                  Mr Taster

                  1. re: Mr Taster

                    There is one other place you can get the Lemon Ice King - Wellington, Florida, which is essentially Palm Beach. Since August of 2010 they've been importing the ices from Lemon Ice King in Corona. The place is called Lemon Ice King of Wellington, very creative.

                    I've been trying to find a distributor or importer. I'm kind of resigned that the only way I'll ever have true Italian Ices in SoCal is if I franchise the Lemon Ice King myself. I've emailed them inquiring about this.

                    1. re: js76wisco

                      If you get a franchise, I'll be the first one on line. (That's right, I said ON line, dammit- in the pre-internet version of the term!)

                      Mr Taster

            2. re: Clyde

              In fact they do carry it at the 99 cent Stores. Just was there and they had lemon. Occasionally they have red, too.

              1. re: mlgb

                I've also seen it at Smart & Final (the one on Laurel Canyon in North Hollywood). I suspect other Smart & Final stores also carry it.

                Smart & Final
                10113 Venice Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90034

                1. re: foodie21

                  Me too. They used to sell it at Costco as well.

            3. Wow, thank you everyone. I'm going to try these places on Saturday!

              1. Just bought some at Walmart, one that has an expanded food section.

                1. FLB, just to clarify, Luigi's italian ice has a different consistency that italian ice in shops. Also, FWIW depending on your boyfriends age, the consistency of Luigi's Italian ice has changed since the last time I had it back east, which has to be a good 15 years ago.