The Ice Cream to Eat in LA

Summer would not be summer without big scoops of ice cream (or three). Much like how we *sometimes* stick our heads in the fridge for immediate relief, Angelenos find comfort in the endless parlors the city of Los Angeles has to offer.

For those warmer nights when the fridge-to-face-trick isn’t quite cutting it, we’ve compiled a list to help ease your pain.

A Summer Night at the Fish Market

somi somi

Just as innovative minds evolved traditional Japanese taiyaki cakes into an ice cream-filled cone, Koreans have morphed their bungeoppang pastries into ah-boong. One might ask the difference between taiyaki and ah-boong — well, taiyaki is grilled while ah-boong is roasted, resulting in a smoked, crunchier outside and softer interior.

This fish-silhouette cone is stuffed with your choice of filling, soft serve and, at Somi Somi, as many toppings as your heart desires! Who doesn’t love unlimited toppings? We love the fluffy texture of their milk and ube swirl. Make sure to check what flavor combinations are available, as they alternate weekly!

A Summer Night at the Flower Shop

grescent

Flowers are a timeless gesture that remind our loved ones how dear they are to our hearts. If you’re looking for a creative way to treat the ones you love, look no further than Gresescent and their ice cream bouquets! They offer colossal cones that fit about a dozen mini scoops of ice cream made to look like a colorful floral arrangement.

The staff here goes the extra mile and kept our scoops chilled until the moment the cone was handed to us, minimizing melting and maximizing picture taking time.

A Summer Night Around the World

wanderlust

At Wanderlust the owners recognized a desire in the masses to explore the nations and created a space to bring the flavors of the globe to one spot. Each recipe evokes thoughts of places we yearn to see or remnants of once traveled regions we miss.

The seasonal flavors change to adhere to where the flavor directors wish they could be. During May, “Japanese Neapolitan” was brought to life. It contained three Japanese staples: matcha, hojicha and black sesame, all whirled together.

A Summer Night at the Farmers Market

carmelas

What started as playing with recipes after hours at a DTLA pizzeria has landed Carmela three storefronts and weekly farmers’ market gigs. Mint Cacao Nib was the flavor that stole our hearts. They use fresh mint leaves, giving a heightened potency to the cooling taste alongside the most incredible cacao bits we’ve ever tasted. If only they sold the nibs by the package.

At the W. 3rd St. location, there’s a freezer door that leads to a room furnished with a vintage photo booth, disco ball and on occasion, a cozy movie night.

A Summer Night Swim in a Pool of Rose Water

mashti malones

From a young age, Mashti worked at his family’s ice cream parlor in Iran. When moving to the States, his intention was to study tech. We’re so glad he went back to ice cream because Mashti Malone’s is the rose water ice cream guru of the city!

Middle Easterners use rose water in anything from skincare to dessert. You must try one of their many variations of rose water ice cream, perhaps on a “Mashti” which is, respectfully, the name of their wafer ice cream sandwich.

A Summer Night to Stay Home With a Pint

salt and straw

As a testimony of love for Salt and Straw, I make a point to visit them before heading back home to the OC just to buy a pint of Woodblock Chocolate and cradle it for the hour drive until I can give it life support via freezer.

S&S has a fresh menu each month. The past two Aprils they left the flavor design up to local students through an “Elementary School Inventor Series.” Kids wrote about the best ice cream flavors they could imagine. Brilliant concoctions such as Ramen Ice Cream, Vanilla Rose Bubble Tea and Salt N Caramel Pepper came to life. Because S&S values the fruits of the student’s labor, a portion of the earnings went back to the schools.

Forrest’s Summer Run to Jeni’s

jenis

With twenty years of experience, Jeni’s carte du jour is packed full of velvety and bold flavors. Rather than stopping at the achievement of something wonderful, they are constantly working towards developing and sharpening their aptitude. They seek constant growth, which is something entrepreneurs and self-improvement enthusiasts alike should take note of.

You absolutely can’t go wrong in trying any of Jeni’s flavors. Their Wildberry Lavender, best described as floral fruity pebbles, has hints of orange and berry mixed with sleek after-notes of lavender.

Noteworthy Mentions

We can’t forget Milk’s Thai tea ice cream-filled macarons, Creme Town’s cremia and handmade cookie-cones (think chocolate-filled milanos), and Midori Matcha with flavor filled matcha hojicha swirl.

What other ice cream spots have you tried in LA?

Images via Steph Sidaros; Featured image by Snap By Three

Stephanie is an encourager, passionate and eager to love people well. She’s an Egyptian-American, youth mentor and founder of Mauve Roots, a nook in the web for ethical goods and write ups on all things food related. Her life goal is to share joy and consume as much ice cream as humanly possible.

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