All summer, we’ve been screaming for ice cream. It’s officially addictive, but we’re totally fine with that. But now that the temperatures are cooling off, it’s time to find sweets with a little something extra. Enter spiked scoops from ice cream “bar-lours” around the country.
Recently, Luigi Beltran, the owner of Luigi’s Ice Cream —a small chain of ice cream parlors known for their rolled ice cream — opened an ice cream counter inside Ani Ramen in Jersey City. In keeping with Luigi Ice Cream tradition, this sweet speakeasy is stocked with alcohol-infused ice cream.
While boozy ice cream is nothing new, the ice cream at Luigi’s is different in that the alcohol is not burned off during the production process.
“It’s stronger,” says Beltran in comparing it to other alcohol-infused ice creams, “but no one’s going to get buzzed off this.”
If you visit, you can order up numerous boozy rolled ice cream flavors such as Strawberry Tequila Rose ice cream with Tequila Rose, vanilla cream, Nilla wafers and whipped cream, or Horchata ice cream with RumChata Liqueur, vanilla cream, Cinnamon Toast Crunch and cinnamon sugar.
Intrigued by the concept? Here are some of the best places coast to coast where you can scoop up boozy ice cream treats now.
The Ice Cream Bar (San Francisco)
Nostalgia abounds at this sweet shop, where soda jerks wearing bow ties build banana splits and whip up thick, creamy milkshakes. They take it to the next level with an array of expertly crafted adult milkshakes. A fun choice is the Royal Red Milkshake, made with Duchesse De Bourgogne Flemish Red Ale, Toro Albala Don PX 2010 sherry, Morello cherry ice cream and turbinado syrup.
Sweet Action Ice Cream (Denver)
This local shop’s recipes rely on local dairies and other close-to-home ingredients, and its boozy flavors are top notch. Stranahan’s Whiskey Brickle tastes exactly like a glass of whiskey on the rocks. Alternatively, Smoked Porter S’mores includes chocolate chunks and marshmallows to emulate the campfire classic. And then there’s their line of ice cream flavors made with local beers:
Shug’s brings a 1930s-era soda fountain into the 21st century with cheerful soda jerks and daily flavors of Lopez Island Creamery ice cream. You can make their floats boozy with champagne or beer or choose from an array of specialty ice cream cocktails. A delicious option is Happy Pants (made with Aperol, house-made orange soda, a float of prosecco and a vanilla ice cream add-in). Or what about this coffee ice cream mixed with Bailey’s, bitters and more:
Butter & Scotch (Brooklyn)
Butter & Scotch soda shop serves up perfectly paired seasonal cocktails and ice cream. There are alcohol-infused floats and shakes made using local Blue Marble organic ice cream, too.
Prohibition Creamery (Austin)
Prohibition Creamery has house-made ice cream on tap in flavors like whiskey chocolate, pecan buttered rum and mezcal vanilla. Even the toppings have a tipsy twist, with boozy brownie bits, Peychaud’s bitters marshmallows and more. That’s not all. They also whip up boozy shakes with fancy liqueurs and fun flavors.
Boiler Room (Chicago)
Boiler Room offers boozy soft serve in addition to pizza and cocktails. The soft serve comes in rotating seasonal flavors, like pumpkin spice latte, vanilla Jameson and spiked eggnog.
Clementine’s Naughty & Nice Creamery (St. Louis)
Both the “nice” and “naughty” small-batch ice cream offerings at this shop start with local milk from grass-fed, pasture-raised, hormone-free cows. The naughty options include boozy boosts like cabernet and bourbon.
Butterfly Ice Cream (Honolulu)
This island outpost specializes in small-batch seasonal flavors, which always include a few alcoholic options. You can watch the ice cream masters work their magic through a window into their adjacent lab, then sample the results. The creative ice creams include flavors like dark beer, rum raisin and cherry moscato. Dairy-free sorbets are just as tempting with peach champagne, lemon daiquiri and watermelon soju to name a few.
Buzzed Bull Creamery (Cincinnati)
Everything is custom and created right in front of you at Buzzed Bull Creamery. They use liquid nitrogen to freeze a base flavor (buzzed or traditional) with fruit, nuts and candy. Plus, they have an extensive selection of alcohol, so you can get an ice cream replica of your favorite cocktail.
Tipsy Scoop (New York City)
This Kips Bay ice cream “barlour” cards guests at the door, so you know what’s inside is the real deal. If you can’t just pick one flavor — among which you’ll find chocolate stout pretzel, red velvet martini and mango margarita — you can sample a flight of four. They have happy hour specials and special ice cream sandwiches. If you can’t make it out to the Big Apple, you can order pints online.
Drooling yet? A wild night out has never been so sweet.