Summer Fun - Cool Treats
There 100 days of summer in Connecticut, and even more great flavors of ice cream to be had across the state.
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There are times during the summer when you just feel like treating yourself to something good—whether it be a big dish of ice cream, a day away from the daily grind, or an experience that only happens at this time of year. With that in mind, we’ve filled these six pages with some suggestions for you. Think of them as little fillers that will add color and fun to the season. Please take us up on them. The chance won’t come again for an entire year.
Buttonwood Farm Ice Cream, Griswold
Lots of places make their own ice cream; Buttonwood goes that extra mile and makes their own cones daily. Flavors range from old-school (Frozen Pudding, a rum raisin with bits of peach, pineapple, maraschino cherry and apple) to elite (Forbidden Silk Chocolate, made with cocoa powder from Holland) to truly kid-friendly (Cotton Candy and Purple Cow). There’s one feature everyone can enjoy: 14 acres of stunning sunflower fields with more than 300,000 blooms, culminating in the annual “Sunflowers for Wishes” campaign July 17-25—every $5 bouquet you buy directly benefits Connecticut’s Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Mystic Drawbridge Ice Cream, Mystic
Some carp that Mystic D’s ice cream is pricey, but given that it comes with a million-dollar view (of the Mystic River and downtown’s historic bascule bridge) and more than a century of tradition—there’s been an ice-cream parlor on this spot since the 1800s—we call it a bargain. Our remedy for a sticky summer day: Cool down with one or more of the specialty flavors (Lemon Chocolate Kiss, Sticky Fractured Finger, Chocolate Mint Oreo), or better still, the infamous Caramel Lover’s Sundae while sitting on the riverside porch and enjoying an ocean breeze or two. 2 W. Main St., (860) 572-7978.
Old Lyme Ice Cream Shoppe, Old Lyme
“Carpe Cre’em” is the motto of this summer-green cottage, set like a rustic jewel on Old Lyme’s quiet, tony main drag. Offering 37 daily rotating, 16 percent butterfat choices—ranging from chocolate and vanilla to rum raisin, Spiced Chai and Mississippi Mud—it’s clearly a prime place for some serious “carpe”ing, whether by the cone, cup, shake, banana boat or our favorite concoction, the “Waffle-Up-Pa-Gus.” That’s not all: Owner Jason Conroy is also vice president of The Brewer’s Cow, makers of Guinness and Sam Adams-infused ice cream. So flavors like Black and Tan, Stout Crème Brûlée and Ten Penny Beer Nut Parfait also appear on the menu, along with frozen yogurt, Italian ice and a selection of hearty deli sandwiches. 34 Lyme St., (860) 434-6942 (oldlymeicecream.com, thebrewerscow.com).
Mortensen’s Ice Cream, Cromwell and Newington
The Mortensen family knows a thing or two about ice cream, having been in the dairy business since 1915, when Elmer Mortensen began delivering milk door-to-door via horse and buggy. Ice cream became the focus in 1976, with the family churning their own homemade flavors on the premises. With 30-some flavors to choose from—Almond Joy, black raspberry, banana and Heath Bar Crunch among them—plus loads of toppings (caramel, strawberries, crushed pineapple, various candies), your sweet tooth is sure to be satisfed. The Cromwell location serves ice cream and its variations (shakes, sorbets, sherberts), while the original Newington location also serves burgers, fries and sandwiches. 27 Shunpike Rd., Cromwell, (860) 632-1094 (cash only); 3145 Berlin Tpke., Newington, (860) 666-8219.