Today was the Market's Third Annual Ice Cream Sunday, a fundraising event that showcases local ice cream makers producing a range of unique flavors and styles. I wasn't able to get tasting tickets in advance for the option to try 8-10 mini-cones, but that was just as well. My intake compartment for ice cream is limited to about a quarter cup.
Because I went with buddies, I still managed to taste quite a few flavors. The best was made by friends at Luca and Bosco--a budding company that is producing wonderful flavor combinations in a base that is less sweet than the average ice cream. Today we sampled the Mint with Chocolate Freckles. Although the concept is not as unique as their Rosemary Olive Oil with Spicy Cashew Praline or their goat cheese varieties, the flavor was above and beyond any mint chocolate chip I have ever encountered.
Our next sample--the mole ice cream from La Newyorkina--knocked the sweetness right off our palates. This company's specialty is bringing the flavors of Mexico to ice cream. Although the texture was less smooth and creamy than others, it had all the delicious complexity of mole with a nice spicy bite on the finish.
Our final sample was a coffee and green cardamom ice cream from the Rouge Tomate. We all agreed we thought there was too much cardamom and not enough coffee. But, I was happy for the reminder about how much I love drinking coffee with cardamom (and sometimes ginger). If you've never had it but you like cardamom, here's how it's done... crack open a green cardamom pod, grind the black seeds with a mortar and pestle, and add hot coffee. (Don't use pre-ground cardamom; it's never the same!)
With our ice cream tanks full, we headed off in search of a quiet bar with a respectable menu in an otherwise touristy neighborhood. Thankfully, we were successful!
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