Way Beyond 'Cup or Cone:' Ice Cream in the Bay Area

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In the Bay Area, food is religion. And ice cream is no exception. From institutions like Fenton's and Mitchell's to relative newcomers like Ici and Bi-Rite, people are eating it up. What's your favorite flavor? Forum talks ice cream with those in the know.[View the story "Listener Picks for Bay Area Ice Cream" on Storify]

Listener Picks for Bay Area Ice Cream

On Monday, July 30, Forum and guest host Scott Shafer examined the ever-evolving world of Bay Area ice cream. Here's a collection of favorite shops and flavors as recommended by the KQED audience. Suggestions are organized by city and region.

Storified by · Mon, Jul 30 2012 17:28:06


Tara's organic ice cream is the best in Oakland!Sarah Smith Gumataotao
tara's organic in oakland and berkeley. the most unusual and interesting flavors. Rachel Ayfer
@KQED @KQEDForum @screamsorbet in #oakland & at farmer's markets. Way better than actual ice cream, plus it's #glutenfree #organic & #localSeren Pendleton-Knol
Fentons Black & Tan! Ummmm!Kate Sullivan

East Bay:

Lush in BerkeleyNatalie Baird
Gotta be Tucker's in Alameda!Al Wright
Lemon chiffon from Lords in orinda. Carmen Garcia
The Ice creamery in Castro ValleyLeda Frediani
Ici garnered lots of recommendations:
Ici in Berkeley! All the others are mere imposters!Harris Krumwiede Ross
Ici's Rose Pistachio and Lush's Gelato Mexican Chocolate and almost everything they have so is delish.Patricia Nemeth
Ici in Berkeley. It turns the simple pleasure of ice cream into a magical experience.Maggie Diamond

San Francisco:

Xanath on Valencia St. In SF...bold, exotic flavors..and free vanilla beans.Joe Morse
DeLise in SFArlene Tsang
Mr and Mrs. Miscellaneous in the dog patch SF is a cute little place with unique flavors and good quality ice cream. And of course Fenton's in Piedmont/ Oakland is the hometown favorite for throwback soda fountain charm. Traci Spencer Griffin
Joe's Ice Cream on Geary. Old school and soooooo good!Jeanette Sasek
Well, Anne from Bi-Rite knows mine, it is balsamic strawberry. I count the days for strawberry season to have that stuff.Jerry James Stone
Humphry Slocombe in The Mission. 'Secret Breakfast' flavor all the way!Paul Valdez
As expected, there was lots of love for Mitchell's:
Honorable mentions go to Humphry Slocombe and Bi-Rite, but nothing beats Mitchell's Ice Cream.Daniel Strickland
Mitchell's on Valencia St. SF the best!!!Ale Cassino
Mitchell's - I love their seasonal flavors, avocado and pumpkin are so good!Vanessa Craviotto

Santa Cruz:

Marianne's Ice Cream in Santa Cruz!Creighton 'Tony' Peet
The Penny Ice Creamery in Santa Cruz! Kevin Augustine

North Bay:

Screamin' Mimi's in SebastopolAdrienne Leihy
Fairfax Scoop in Fairfax, CA. Local, small batches, organic, DELICIOUS, very friendly folks, they even make their own waffle cones. They have pictures of local kids on their walls from the year they first opened. Many are old enough to work there now. Sandra Soklin
@kqedforum @ThreeTwins is a fantastic local organic ice cream shop, started in Terra Linda and has grown leaps and boundsMichelle Stern
Three Twins "Dad's Cardamom" is the best!Stacey Rosenberg
La Michoacana 504 Broadway ,Vallejo has great ice cream and nice baked goods.I had the Kahlua ice cream today,it was divine.My son said the vanilla was the best he's had.Also Lileds on Tennessee st. in Vallejo has delicious house made ice cream and candy.Jill Shaw

Chains, Trucks and It's-Its:

Rite-Aid drugstores. Woefully underappreciated!Kath Tea
Just tuned in - did you cover Twirl and Dip - the ice cream truck! The best soft serve and you can get with TCHO chocolate dip and sea salt!Stacey Rosenberg
Just ate an Original Flavor It's It; there's nothing quite like IT!Laura Yoni Formisano- Mayeri
And finally, listeners weighed in on the Bay Area's enduring love of ice cream... despite having what some might call "chilly" summers:
Why are we obsessed with ice cream? Because ice cream is always delicious.Ramin Khayatpoor
The Bay Area is an epicenter of fine dining and appreciation for good food of all sorts. Why should that not include ice cream? Especially with all the organic dairy farms popping up all over Sonoma Country and thereabouts.John Kelly
Why is a hot sunny day needed to eat ice cream? Growing up in Europe it was always sad to see all the ice cream shops close up for the winter at the end of summer, over there is was pretty taboo to eat ice cream once it got the slightest bit cold.Noah Arribas-Layton
Ice cream is delicious. 'Nuf said.Avril Baty


Janny Hu, food writer, San Francisco Chronicle

Anne Walker, co-founder, Bi-Rite Creamery and Bakeshop, and co-author of "Sweet Cream and Sugar Cones: 90 Recipes for Making Your Own Ice Cream and Frozen Treats From Bi-Rite Creamery"

Mary Canales, founder, Ici Ice Cream

Linda Mitchell, co-manager, Mitchell's Ice Cream



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