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The Best Ice Cream in Philly

Sometimes, you need to just "chill."

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It's kind of funny that the best time for ice cream coincides with bathing suit season but if you're in Philly, you've just got to eat some ice cream — diet or no diet! From time-honored gems like Bassett’s to newbies on the scene like Weckerly’s, there’s surely a scoop, a sundae, a sandwich or a cone with your name on it. So throw caution to the wind and get ready for a sugar-infused brain freeze at one of Philly’s best ice cream spots. Your tastebuds will thank you.


Franklin Fountain
116 Market St.
franklinfountain.com

Nestled on a cozy corner in Old City, Franklin Fountain will take you back in time with its 19th century decor, resembling an old-fashioned ice cream parlor and soda fountain. While the ambiance alone is enough to draw a crowd, it is simply a cherry on top of their decadent, homemade ice cream.

What to try: Hydrox Cookie, Mint Chocolate Chip, Honeycomb (made from their own rooftop hives!) and the Mt. Vesuvius sundae.


Weckerly’s Ice Cream
9 Girard Ave. (not open yet)
weckerlys.squarespace.com

Founded by Andy and Jen Satinsky in 2012, the husband and wife team began making Weckerly’s ice cream in West Philly’s Green Line Cafe. Done in the French-style, their batch is slow churned and inspired by the seasons, using the freshest local ingredients. A brick-and-mortar shop for Weckerly’s will be opening soon on Girard Avenue but until then, you can find them at the stores listed on their website.

What to try: The Black & White and Lemon Verbena Black Raspberry


BTW: Purple Plain, a commemorative Ice Cream to benefit Philadelphia School District Music Programs, is on deck at both shops right now.

A photo posted by Little Baby's Ice Cream (@littlebabysic) on

Little Baby’s Ice Cream
2311 Frankford Ave.
littlebabysicecream.com

Their website says “ice cream is a feeling” and you are sure to find a flavor for whatever mood you're in at Little Baby’s. With quirky options like Pizza and Everything Bagel, it is definitely a one-of-a- kind ice cream experience. Plus, all of the ice cream is hand-made, using local ingredients. Started back in 2011, by a group of former musicians, Little Baby's built its brand distributing ice cream by “multi-media” tricycle. The business has since expanded to two locations and continues to make appearances at festivals and concerts around the city. They even have non-dairy options.

What to try: Cardamom Caramel, Chocolate Sea Salt, Coconut Chai, and Peanut Butter Maple Tarragon


Hillary Duff got a Salty Pimp. You should too #thefattening regram from @nycfoodgals

A photo posted by 💃🏼🍦💃🏼 (@biggayicecream) on

Big Gay Ice Cream
521 S. Broad St.
biggayicecream.com

Big Gay Ice Cream was actually launched in New York, but they decided to open their first location outside of the Big Apple in our fair city. Philly has embraced the bold, in-your-face soft serve with open arms (mouths wide open- too much?). Whether you’re in the mood for Chocolate, Dulce de leche, or even Key Lime, you’ll find something to suit your fancy here. Need a caffeine boost? They also brew their own coffee now.

What to try: Salty Pimp is out of this world good and is made up of soft serve Vanilla, Dulce de Leche and Sea Salt, dipped in a hard chocolate shell.


Bassett’s Ice Cream
1136 Arch St.
bassettsicecream.com

A visit to Reading Terminal Market wouldn’t be complete without sampling the homemade ice cream from Bassett’s. Around since 1861, their ice cream has stood the test of time and has been a Philly favorite for generations. Over the years they’ve added lots of new flavors so good luck picking just one for your cone! Bassett’s also has gluten-free ice cream available.

What to try: For the more traditional, try Moosetracks or Butter Pecan. For the non-traditional, the Guatemalan Ripple is pretty intense — a Coffee and mocha ripple ice cream that's blended with mini chocolates filled with...you guessed it! More coffee.


Zsa's Ice Cream
No storefront
zsasicecream.com

Tracking down Zsa’s Ice Cream on any given day requires some planning, as they don’t have a brick-and-mortar location yet, but you can find them at Farmers’ Markets, events and co-ops around the city. Another small-batch ice cream outfit, Zsa’s is committed to using local ingredients and nothing artificial.

What to try: One of their signature flavors, Black Magic, combines large chunks of chocolate cake with Coffee- flavored ice cream. Yum!

Did we miss your favorite ice cream spot? Tell us in the comments below.

Follow Jennifer Logue on Twitter @jenniferlogue

 

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