Growing up in suburban Virginia, summertime meant late nights hanging outside of the local Dairy Queen. Not so much for the ice cream, but to be seen by other awkward teenagers. But, everyone knew that for actual ice cream, you drove down to Bergey’s Dairy farm for the richest, creamiest frozen treat you could ever find. When I moved away and heard that due to financial woes and health department codes, Bergey’s had to shut down, I felt like a part of my youth was gone. Since then, I haven’t had much interest in ice cream, who could compete?
Fresh. Ice Cream (6033 Glenwood Ave, Raleigh, NC 27612) may end up reawakening my long-dormant ice cream mania. The stand, right next to our beloved Taverna Agora, opened up during the Spring and I have seen a crowd of people waiting for cones of the sweet stuff every time I drive by. After a particularly humid day, it was time to see how Fresh’s ice cream would stack against my nostalgic taste.
First of all, I’m glad that Fresh. seems to stay away from the Flurry /Concrete /Blizzard Frankenstein treats that every other ice cream place offers. Often times, these treats are too sweet and too heavy for me to enjoy. Instead, it’s all about tradition here, just ice cream in cone and maybe some hot fudge on top.
But what really stands out is how well-made this ice cream is. It’s creamy without being cloying, and isn’t too sweet, which I feared when I picked the local pride flavor, Carolina crunch. With peanut butter, caramel, and toffee, it didn’t feel overwhelming with sweetness or give me the dreaded post-ice cream stomachache. The next time I go, I need to try the Strawberry flavor. The visible chunks of strawberry and the deep red of the ice cream made me want to snatch the cone from a little girl standing next to me.
Plus, I love a good waffle cone. When you live in Southeast Virginia, going to Doumar’s, home of the waffle cone, is a rite of passage. Once again, I was feeling nostalgic when I picked this and once again, was not disappointed. The waffle cone was light, crunchy, with just a touch of sweetness. More importantly, it held up to my quickly melting single scoop (which is a lie, because it’s double what you would get at any other ice cream stop, yea for more bang for your buck!).
For those who aren’t ice cream fans, Fresh. offers cool and delicious glass bottles of milk from Maple View Farms in Chapel Hill to take home. Talk about nostalgia! While it may not beat a home-delivery, getting creamy, dairy-fresh milk without synthetic hormones is the next-best thing.
It may not be possible to recapture your youth with an ice cream cone, but with a summer full of sweltering heat, cooling off at Fresh. Creamery ain’t a bad place to start.