As the summer begins to draw to a close, everyone is desperate to keep the summer spirit alive for as long as they can — and what embodies summer more than ice cream? A road trip down the West Coast is pretty much a perfect summer holiday, so I took it upon myself to investigate the best spots along the West Coast for an ice cream. A tough job, but someone has to do it.
I started my exploration in Vancouver, British Columbia. Vancouver was a treasure trove of delicious treats and, sitting by the water, in the sun, with some Canadian maple syrup cheesecake was perhaps one of the best moments of life so far. It wasn’t until I reached Granville Island, however, that I found a truly fantastic ice cream. The vendors at Granville Public Market change weekly, but everyone there is known for creating fresh, delicious, artisan foods. Plus it’s situated right next to the marina, so the atmosphere and views you can enjoy while you eat are second to none.
Next stop: Seattle, where I was treated to so many ice cream shops that it is hard to narrow it down. Sweet Bumpas can be found at a variety of farmer’s markets around Seattle, and they pride themselves on using 100% fresh, locally sourced ingredients. However, it is the flavours that make them a must-visit, putting really delicious twists on classic flavours. If you get the chance, make sure you try the black rice and ginger ice cream. Your taste buds will thank you.
While you’re ice cream tasting in Seattle, make sure you pay Old School Frozen Custard a visit. You can find it on Capitol Hill, and it has become an institution in Seattle — in fact, it almost shut down once but a group of people got together to make sure that it could stay open. Now that’s dedication to ice cream. It is now owned by the people responsible for making their delicious chocolate chip cookies, so an ice cream (or frozen custard) sandwich is a must.
I’d like to give an honourable mention to Seattle Pops. Not exactly ice cream, but these popsicles are honestly phenomenal, and the flavours are amazing. Spicy pineapple jalapeno is one you won’t be forgetting any time soon.
Next, we hit Oregon, and where better to go for an Oregonian ice cream than to the dairy headquarters of Tilamook cheese factory. Don’t worry, they serve more than just cheese — their ice cream menu is extensive and delicious. Make sure you go with an empty stomach though, as their portions are extremely generous. Treat yourself to a waffle cone, and go to town. You can even go taste some cheese afterwards, if you’ve left any room (although that is unlikely).