Here’s the scoop: the best unexpected ice cream flavors in Minneapolis

A&E explored local ice cream shops last weekend and found the spots you should check out.

Clara Samper-Zelaya licks her ice cream on Saturday, July 20 at Izzys Ice Cream in Minneapolis.

Image by Jasmin Kemp

Clara Samper-Zelaya licks her ice cream on Saturday, July 20 at Izzy’s Ice Cream in Minneapolis.

by Becca Most

With weather creeping into the high 80s this week, ice cream is becoming more of a necessity than a summer treat.

To help you combat the heat wave, A&E visited a few ice cream shops near campus to scout out those with the most unique flavor combinations.

Izzy’s Ice Cream, 1100 S. 2nd St., Minneapolis

First on the list is Izzy’s ice cream, home of the tiny Izzy scoop. 

With 32 rotational flavors, including Strawberry Mint Mojito and Sage Brown Butter, Izzy’s had by far the most flavors for customers to sample.

Charlotte Wolf, a University of Minnesota sophomore studying acting and social justice, said that every time she comes into work at Izzy’s there is a different flavor on display, often something she’s never even tried before.

As the line of customers snaked out the door, it was clear Izzy’s was doing something right. Many enjoyed their cones on the grass of Gold Medal Park outside while others huddled in the safety of the air conditioning.

Flavors to try: Mango Django (mango, pink peppercorns, cayenne pepper, poppy seeds, honey, balsamic vinegar) and Butter Queen Coffee (brown butter, coffee-based ice cream, chocolate-covered espresso flakes)

Sonny’s Ice Cream, 3403 Lyndale Ave. S., Minneapolis

Decorated like an Italian cafe, Sonny’s Ice Cream exemplifies the deliciousness of local ingredients in a beautiful location.

Employee Annie Dexheimer said Sonny’s gets a lot of repeat customers, some even coming on the same day every week.

When one regular was moving out of state and said he’d miss their Chocolate Habanero ice cream, the owner was sure to have a batch ready for his departure. 

With flavors like Candied Ginger, Cardamom Black Pepper and Blood Orange Sorbet, it’s clear that Sonny’s creativity and hospitality makes it worth the trek.

Flavors to try: Cucumber Sorbet with Pinot Grigio and Fresh Mint and Surfer Dude (cold press coffee and Surly’s Bender brown ale)

Milkjam Creamery, 2743 Lyndale Ave. S., Minneapolis

Next is Milkjam Creamery, whose line on most evenings stretches a block or two away from their door.

With 16 rotational flavors, including PB vs. Everybody, Hibiscus Lemonade and Thai Tea, Milkjam is well known in the Twin Cities for their rich and creamy dessert.

Although they carry the usual ice cream toppings of chocolate fudge and whipped cream, Milkjam also offers extra virgin olive oil, vegan black caramel and rum butterscotch for customers to splurge on too.

Last August, Milkjam added something you might not expect to see — an ice cream and hot dog stand (1848 E. 38th St, Minneapolis).

Serving multiple flavors of ice cream and specialty dogs like the Guac-ever Dog, this could be a spot to go if you’re looking for a little something extra.

Flavors to try: Uma Thurman (Greek yogurt with passion fruit lychee swirl), Black (a vegan dark cocoa).

La La Homemade Ice Cream, 3146 Hennepin Ave. S., Minneapolis

La La Homemade Ice Cream specializes in simple and seasonal flavors using local produce.

With fan favorites like Sweet Basil Vanilla, Rhubarb and Raspberry Honey, La La’s ice cream doesn’t fuss around with preservatives or artificial flavorings.

Kajal Ondich, a University student who works at the shop, said La La gets their strawberries from a local farm, and owner Jennifer Lisburg hand-picks the rhubarb needed for their recipes.

For those who maybe aren’t looking for flavors too far outside their comfort zone, La La offers a sweet release from the summer sun with good flavor and nice company.

Flavors to try: Good Girl (almond, lavender and burnt honey) and Marzipan Chip (almond ice cream with chopped dark chocolate)