The Art of Italian Ice

If you ask me, frozen treats are delectable at any point in the year.  Maybe that’s my California background speaking as we don’t normally encounter the so-called “winter” weather.  Well, back east they like to keep things seasonal, shutting down the Italian ice stores just as the summer months come to a close.  They open up shortly after spring has sprung and welcome in the hungry kids and salivating adults such as myself on a warm spring evening.

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My first experience with east coast ice happened to be in my California hometown when they opened up a ice and custard store called Rita’s.

My cousin happened to be working the store when it first opened, so of course we had to pop in at every chance, just to see him all dressed up in his official garb.  That and there was this lovely little incentive called the family discount.  Well, don’t mind if I do. 🙂

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The pumpkin was divine (as all pumpkin lovers would like to know) but it’s the black cherry that stole my heart.  Really, the chunks of cherry a midst the freshly made ice, just made it to die for.  One can top their treat with a swirl of custard, making the creation a GELATI but I much prefer my custard and ice separate, especially on an overwhelmingly hot day. (Dairy + extreme heat = not appealing)

IMG_4015 Fun little stop in New Jersey when I was with some family friends for the weekend.  Most shops are seasonal on the east coast but this one happened to be open year round.

IMG_4016Again, black cherry is where it’s at.  This time I didn’t mind a bit of custard on top, but that’s probably because it was about 60F outside, unlike my first experience at the end of August when it was blazing hot.

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Ralph’s Famous Italian Ices
(144 East 24th St. New York, NY 10010)

Lucky for me and my summer d.i.e.t. (“did I eat that”) 😉 there are plenty of ice shops around the city.  Ralph’s is a favorite of mine, simply by the fact that I walk past it every day on the way to the gym.  I have yet to purchase anything more than once but a girl can dream.  And dream I do.

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11 thoughts on “The Art of Italian Ice

  1. Rita’s is always a fun trip! I love the cherry and Swedish fish flavors! I’m not a fan of gelatis, though. Keep them separate in my opinion…taste and texture is too strange for me!

  2. I used to love Ralphs when they first opened. For years I was all about the Snickers Fudge crème ices, the peanut butter cookie dough and more recently the rainbow cookie. I don’t stop for it as often as I used to but I really should! I never liked water ices, aside from the rainbow ices because I found them pretty.

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