lick the heat
Some creamy treats to help sweeten the heat
Despite the generous outpouring of spring showers we’ve seen lately, let’s face it: relentless summer heat will be here before we know. Luckily, the list of local forms of refreshment keeps growing and the options are all much more portable — and delicious — than Barton Springs!
“We’ve had a love affair with ice cream all of our lives,” says Valerie Ward, one half of Sweet Ritual, “We recognize the power of sitting down with a creamy dessert and a good friend…how it opens up a comforting world where you can converse, relax, and just enjoy.”
After two years creating frozen comfort for Amy’s Ice Cream, Ward joined forces with Amelia Raley, who had concocted a rotating menu of vegan softserve for Dhaba Joy (formerly housed in Toy Joy). Together, they serve plant-based soft-serve from their vintage-inspired ice cream shop based in the Daily Juice Café, where they turn out magical offerings such as the Glitter Beast (salted caramel, strawberry compote, edible glitter), sundaes using brownies from Capital City Bakery, and shakes using cookie dough from Celeste’s Best.
And every detail of their menu is vegan, from the gelatin-free gummy worms and marshmallows to the honeyless graham crackers and housemade sauces. “Our world is changing,” says Ward, “and for those with severe allergies, gluten or dairy intolerance, or ethical standards with respect to the treatment of animals, Sweet Ritual is here to offer a sweet alternative.”
Mom & Pop’s All Natural Frozen Pops
If you’ve ever sought solace from the sun while shopping on South Congress and found it in a stick of frozen pineapple-basil heaven, you’ve most likely had one of Mom & Pop’s all natural popsicles.
Owners Manuel and Laura Flores wanted to share the Mexican paletas of their childhood with their own children, but very quickly found that the options on this side of the borders were not the fresh frozen fruit pops they remembered. They’ve been around since 2008, initially operating as PopSoCools out of a cart on South Congress, then merging with a business partner to become Goodpop. Now back to the original duo, they found it only appropriate to be called Mom and Pop’s.
Their mission has always remained true: “Our goal is to fight local warming to our cool, delicious and healthy treats that are handcrafted, and free of dyes, colors, preservatives, stabilizesr, or artificial sweeteners.” Their rotating cast of 40 refreshing flavors can be found at Wheatsville Co-op, Royal Blue Grocery on Congress, The Natural Gardener, Peoples RX on North Lamar, and farmer’s markets around town. They will also deliver a dozen or more of their paletas to any business or residence in town.
When Marcello Kreindel relocated to Houston from his native Argentina to manage a software company ten years ago, he felt something pulling him in another direction...it was the call of gelato!
Now the owner of Trentino Gelato, he’s been making high-end, small batch Italian-style sorbets and ice creams for the past five years. Kreindel pioneered a chef-inspired series by collaborating with local Houston culinary greats to create unique gelato flavors inspired by their signature dishes. Now, the Austin chef series is available at both Central Market locations and the downtown Whole Foods Market, with an unmistakable likeness of each chef sketched on every pint.
Look for Shawn Cirkiel’s coconut basil sorbet, mixologist Bill Norris’ honey mezcal gelato, and pastry chef Laura Sawicki’s malted dulce de leche. Summer’s already looking sweeter…