One of the best things in the world on a day like today is chasing a couple scoops of ice cream with a gulp or two of cleansing, ultra-cold ice water. It is a sensation most appreciated when the mercury spikes into the 100’s. So why not brave the heat away from your home or office and stop into one of these local shops for some frozen love.
Cool Moon, 1105 NW Johnson Street, Mon — Wed 11:30 am — 10 pm, Thur — Sat 11:30 am — 11 pm, Sun 11:30 am - 10 pm
Cool Moon might be busy as hell and full of grimy tykes fresh from the Jamison Square Park fountain, but if you can stand the chaos for a few moments you’ll be treated to some of the best homemade ice cream in Portland. Try the Kulfi, a concoction that balances flavors of pistachio and cardamom to great effect.
Tonalli’s, 2805 NE Alberta St, 8037 N Lombard, Mon-Sun 7 am-Midnight
Tonalli’s has been a staple of down-home goodness on Alberta for a long time. Though they’re famed for their donuts, they also have a good selection of ice cream. Why not buy a plain raised and put a couple scoops on top? I can think of worse ways to cool down. The second Tonalli’s location is more of the same, except it’s in St. Johns, so there’s that.
Tart, 2128 SE Division, Sun — Thur noon - 9 pm, Fri & Sat noon - 10 pm
This little frozen custard joint does not get as much attention as it deserves. The frozen custard is true custard, rich and deeply luscious. The soft-serve frozen yogurt, however, is my favorite, made tart through live active cultures. They make up for a limited amount of flavors by offering toppings that range from decadent (chocolate) to healthy (granola).
Junior Ambassadors, 4734 N. Albina, Fri — Sat 2 pm — 8 pm
Okay, so this place isn’t going to help you much now, but should the heat hold into the weekend, this cart on Albina will be the place for you to get your avocado ice cream fix. Avocado is just one of the odd flavors being made by Junior Ambassadors. You can also find Strawberry Chipotle and Corn on the Cob. Ice cream as lunch? I’m game.
Staccato Gelato, 232 NE 28th, 1540 SE Bybee, Mon-Thurs 11 am-10 pm, Fri-Sat 8 am-11 pm, Sun 8 am-9 pm
This city is lousy with gelato shops and I’ll admit to having been to few of them. I’m including good ol’ Staccato because they are ridiculously local and also the first gelato shop I ever encountered in the city. Both spaces are bright, cheery, and kid friendly. The homemade gelato changes regularly.
Skyline Restaurant, 1313 NW Skyline Blvd, Mon — Thur 11 am — 9 pm, Fri — Sat 7 am — 9 pm
If you’re in need of that special Twin Peaks vibe, head out to this old drive-in diner in the hills and order a classic milkshake, malt, or sundae. The setting is idyllic, the drive will take you out of the city heat, and the food will make you nostalgic for a time you probably never lived in. For some reason, a cold soda just tastes better in a place like this on a day like today.
Hell, I know it isn’t a comprehensive list. So, help your fellow Blogtownies out: Where are you getting your frozen dairy products these days?