A Guide to the Best Ice Cream Spots in St. Louis
July–in case you didn’t know–is National Ice Cream Month!
What better place to celebrate an entire month of ice cream than St. Louis?
After all, this is the destination that gave the country the waffle ice cream cone. It happened at the 1904 World’s Fair, and while accounts vary, many historians say Ernest A. Hamwi, a Syrian vendor at the fair, came up with the idea of shaping waffles into cones.
Someone–history’s hazy on who that was–plopped a scoop of ice cream in the “cone,” and a staple of summer was born.
St. Louis is bursting with great places to enjoy great ice cream–and its variants. In fact, there are so many incredible flavors, toppings and concoctions in St. Louis that you could try a new one each day in July–thank goodness there’s 31 of ‘em!–and not get around to trying them all.
So in the spirit of National Ice Cream month, here’s a sampling of some places to experience a chill thrill in St. Louis:
Bailey’s Range known for its wonderfully juicy burgers and excellent beer selection. But it would be a tragedy to forget the ice cream, especially when the ice cream in question is homemade and includes such inventive flavors.
Baileys’ Chocolate Bar features 10 flavors of ice cream and four flavors of sorbet. The Bailey’s Chocolate Brownie is served with caramel sauce and your choice of ice cream. The specials are truly special and include the Brownie Royale described as “not for the faint of heart” (it’s a Bailey’s Sprit on top of a brownie) and the ‘Smores Ice Cream Cake with graham cracker crust, marshmallow, chocolate ice cream and toasted marshmallow whip.
Bella’s is not a traditional frozen yogurt shop. This is a place where everyone can come and get something to eat. There offerings include gluten-free, sugar-free, vegan and dairy options, and even a full line of smoothies that use frozen yogurt as the base.
Clementine’s Naughty & Nice Creamery is the only all-natural micro-creamery in the state of Missouri. They offer 24 flavors of ice cream on hand – eight “naughty” (with booze) and 16 “nice” (sans alcohol), which can be had in cups, by the pint or ensconced in a variety of cones.
On National Ice Cream Day, Sunday July 18. Clementine’s will be giving away free limited edition t-shirts and introducing two new flavors: Mojo Coco and Missouri Mud.
Crown Candy Kitchen has been serving up yummy things to St. Louisans since 1913. True to its name, the eatery makes its own chocolate candies but you can also get lunch or dinner there. The main reason to go to Crown Candy is the unparalleled ice cream concoctions. Made on site in an antique copper candy kettle, Crown’s ice cream contains 14 percent butterfat. Crown says it’s rich and creamy – but not too sweet.
Add ice cream to the root beer brewed at the microbrewery and you have a float like no other! The restaurant also features frosty shakes and malts.
The restaurant’s specialty ice cream martinis are a dream-in-a-glass, and its old-fashioned ice cream specialties are extra special. Counting calories? Try the world’s smallest ice cream cone!
For a taste of something tropical, head to The Island Frozen Yogurt in the Soulard neighborhood. Try a spiked shake-style drink made with its frozen custard, frozen yogurt, fruit and more.
If you’re in the mood for locally and nationally featured award-winning cupcakes and homemade ice creams, Jilly’s Cupcake & Ice Cream Bar is your one stop shop! Their homemade ice cream is packed with chunks of cake, candies and swirls of sweet perfection with signature flavors such as Gooey Butter Brownie Batter and Browned Butter Pecan.
Your biggest problem at Serendipity will be figuring out which flavor you want. The store makes–on site–more than 100 flavors, among them gooey butter, toasted coconut, Bordeaux cherry and Cookie Monster, a bright blue ice cream that tastes like cotton candy. Fortunately, your decision is narrowed because only 28 flavors are in the case at any given time. Serendipity draws customers from all around and sells to 100 restaurants “all over town,” owner Beckie Jacobs says.
The St. Louis Union Station Soda Fountain is a refreshing blast from the past with sweets, treats and eats for everyone. Situated between The St. Louis Wheel and The St. Louis Aquarium, the St. Louis Union Station Soda Fountain offers unique spins on ice cream sundaes, boozy drinks, phosphate sodas, old-time candy, and Freak Shakes – an unexpected take on the traditional milkshake.
Founded by Ted Drewes Sr. himself in 1930. The frozen custard – thicker than ice cream and made with egg yolk – is served out of two old-school stands in St. Louis City. Order your frozen custard in a classic concrete, malts, shakes and sundaes. Best-sellers include the banana split, strawberry shortcake (shortcake topped with frozen custard, strawberries and whipped cream) and Cardinal Sin – a concrete or sundae with tart cherries and hot fudge.
Serving up hand-dipped ice cream and gelato made by Central Dairy in Jefferson City, Missouri. The mom-and-pop shop is located in South Grand and is just a short stroll to Tower Grove Park. The vibrant shop offers classic flavors; “primary” options like cinnamon, Butter Brickle and cherry-vanilla; or premium ice cream such as black walnut, Jamocha Almond Fudge and Extreme Chocolate. Sherbet, frozen yogurt and additional seasonal flavors, as well as banana splits, malts, shakes, floats, massive ice-cream sandwiches and housemade Oreo cream pie should satisfy just about anyone looking for something sweet.