Everyone has an opinion about ice cream, and mostly that opinion is that it’s awesome. We never get sick of the classic flavors, and we never get sick of trying new ones. In Brooklyn, there is certainly no shortage of ice cream joints, so definitely try to hit up every one you see. However, if that venture seems a bit too overwhelming, here is a list of what some might call the top 5 ice cream shops in Brooklyn.
Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream
In 2008, a few friends set out to revive the good old-fashioned American ice cream truck. A few trucks and a few stationary locations later, this talented crew have evolved into true artisans. All of the ice cream is made from scratch right in Greenpoint. The classic flavors feature nothing more than fresh milk, cream, cane sugar, and egg yolks. Nothing artificial in these flavors, folks. Their selection is extensive, to say the least, and even includes vegan recipes such as salted caramel, planet earth, mint chip, cookie dough, and so much more. There are 5 locations in Brooklyn alone, but they’ll ship nationwide (so, tell your friends). Find them locally in Boerum Hill, 620 Manhattan Ave, and 204 Wythe Ave.
OddFellows Ice Cream Co.
While this place rotates a dozen or so flavors that can even change throughout the day, they’ve offered more than 400 different flavors since they opened in 2013. Not to tease too much, as you never know what’s going to be available when you walk in, but to give you an idea of what kinds of flavors they can concoct, imagine this: chorizo caramel swirl, maple bacon pecan, buttermilk honey blueberry, Tahitian vanilla, and chocolate chunk. The people at OddFellows pride themselves in using only locally-sourced, hormone-free and additive-free dairy right in their Brooklyn kitchen. They even pasteurize their own product, which they say has a direct effect on the texture and depth of flavor. Unconventional? Maybe. Delicious? Absolutely. A portion of their sales even goes to the Food Bank for New York City.
Haven’t you ever wondered what true Italian Gelato is like? This place is the real deal. Okay, so technically gelato isn’t ice cream, but Gelateria Gentile on Wythe Ave definitely deserves a spot as one of the top 5 ice cream shops in Brooklyn. They offer a rich selection of coffee and pastries as well, but most people know this gem as a place for amazing gelato. The Gentile family started making Gelato in Italy in 1880, and each generation keeps the tradition alive.
Ample Hills Creamery
Talk about humble beginnings – this husband and wife team whipped up a few flavors a few years back and just hoped someone would come to try them. Four days later, they ran out! Ample Hills was the first to pasteurize on-site in NYC, which earned them the nickname of “Brooklyn’s freshest.” Just about all of their mix-ins are made by hand in-house, and they make sure you get a nice big mouthful in every bite. Whether you’re enjoying the oatmeal lace, butter pecan brittle, or brownie bite, you’ll get a generous portion of each chewy or crunchie morsel. Their flavors have fun names, too, like The Commodore, The King of Mangoes, The Hell’s Kitchen Sink, and It Came from Gowanus. It shouldn’t be hard to find one of their 5 Brooklyn locations, and when you do, ask them about their nationwide shipping options.
Emack & Bolio’s
When you get your inspiration from ethnic grocery stores, random customers, mother nature, and renowned dessert chefs alike, ice cream magic is bound to happen. Emack & Bolio’s do smoothies, chocolate, ice cream pizza, and a few other novelties, but when Good Housekeeping Magazine hails the venue as “The Best Ice Cream Purveyors in the Country” and the New York Times says it’s “An Ice Cream Shop with More than a Lick of Promise,” it’s safe to say they are the ice cream of the crop. Their flavor list is more than 100 deep, and each one is made using cows’ milk without genetically induce hormones. Believe it or not, this ice cream shop over on Montague Street was started by two hippie lawyers who loved music. The place is even named after two homeless gentlemen the attorneys represented pro bono back in the day. Yes, this place has atmosphere, great ice cream, and they’ll even dip your cone in cereal!
Ice cream always hits the spot, no matter how warm or cold the weather is. The next time you’re in the mood for something sweet, check out one of the top 5 ice cream shops in Brooklyn.