March 10, 2018
Baskin Robbins, Florham Park, New Jersey
Open all year
I assume initially Baskin Robbins ice cream was sold at Dunkin’ Donut Shops because stereotypically people purchase donuts in the morning and ice cream in the afternoon – they could customers all day. I like the avaiability of ice cream for any meal of the day. I also happen to enjoy their ice cream – a nice variety of creative flavors, great taste and textre, available anytime, open all year!
The Florham Park Baskin Robbins has colorful indoor seating, convenient outdoor seating, great lighting and is attracrively decorated. After we purchased our ice cream – I had Jamoca Almond Fudge and Don had Chocolate Chip – we sat down to eat it at the only available table wiich was semi-attached to a table with four women sitting at it. We heard more petty gossip than I have been treated to for quite a while. “Audry” (the name was changed to protect the innocent or guilty, whichever is the case) obviously has done lots to get these women pissed off – she did not play nice at the PTA functions, her kids did not play nice with their kids. But do not worry, one of these women was friends with Audry, so she was assigned to be the official spy – I want to meet Audry.
Why we were here: Two comments about our experience today: (1) The day started with the Saint Patrick’s Day parade in Morristown, NJ – Awesome parade as always – great crowd watching, great organization by the folks who run it, great group of people who I march with (Colonial Musketeers – I love youe all!). (2) After the parade, we travelled south for lunch. I could not believe the amount of damage that a recent snow storm (with lots of wind) did to this area. We got a lot more snow than these people (makes me happy – I am one of those weird people that loves snow!) but a lot less damaging winds. Here trees were down everywhere, many roads were still closed and some people were still without power. Amazing how powerful wind can be!
February 20, 2018
Angel’s Recipe Ice Cream and Crepes (inside Gogi Grill), Hoboken. New Jersey
open all year
We found Angel’s Recipe Ice Cream and Crepes by chance while wandering around Hoboken, looking for a place to eat dinner. We saw the sign – two places in one. We ate a dinner at Gogi Grill (Korean food – excellent) and followed it up with ice cream. I initially assumed that “Angel” referred to the guy who made the flavors or opened the place, but they are indicating a more divine source (heaven sent).
Angel’s Recipe makes Thai style ice cream rolls while you watch with your choice of ingredients, I assume Thai style ice cream means the roll up process. I ordered a “Mr. Peanut” with coffee ice cream. They took liquid coffee ice cream, and placed it on a frozen board, with mix-ins that they chopped on the board (Resses Peanut Butter Cup and peanuts). Using spatulas they swirled the mixture on a frozen pan – as it was swirled, it froze, and the spatulas were used to form several rolls which were placed into a cup, additional toppings were added and it was served. There were several creative combinaitons to order from, or you could create your own, Renee ordered S’mores with toasted marshmallow. The man rolling the ice cream seemed to be having a lot of fun I know we had fun watchimg him and then eating his creations. Next time you are in Hoboken, add this place to your itenary!
My reflections for the day: Well I have had an on-again, off-again relationship with Hoboken. In the 1980s I started my Master’s degree at Stevens Institute of Technology, but I took a break from school when I became a mom. Fast forward time, and my second daughter decided to attend Stevens Institute – I became reaquainted with Hoboken. A few years after she finished her degree, I found myself in Hoboken once more to finish my Master’s degree – took 30 years, but I finally finished it! I thought this would be the end of my association with Hoboken, until my oldest daughter moved there. Once again I found myself visiting Hoboken often. Tonight she is moving to Boston for a new job. This time I feel fairly certain that my association with Hoboken is over, except for possibly an occassional Path train. I have seen tremendous changes in this city over the last 35 years. It has grown into a beautiful, sophisticated city, one that I might like to live in, but I am not a city girl. I need my walks in the woods a couple of days a week. But I will miss visiting Hoboken!
March 3, 2018
Family Farm Ice Cream, Middletown, New York
Open all year
We found a hidden source of ice cream in Middletown, New York – Family Farm Ice Cream. It is off the beaten track, but not real far from all the shopping Middletown has to offer (too bad NY charges tax on clothes). Family Farm is nicely decorated with photographs, posters and memorabilia on walls including an autographed poster from a race car driver. I am not sure who these people in the photos are, but I am sure if you lived in the area, they would be very fun to look at. There were Connect Four games on all the tables (I won 3 games today). Outside there was plenty of seating and a cow statue that should add a festive atmosphere in the warmer weather.
When we walked, the friendly server asked us if we wanted to try any ice cream or frozen yogurt flavors – they served Perry’s and Hershey’s Ice Cream as well as soft serve. She especially liked their Chocolate Chip Frozen Yogurt and Cappachino Crunch ice cream – I had fun sampling both! There were many creative and interesting sundaes including E. T., Fruity Pebbles and Cookie Monster – three of my favorite charactors. (Although my love for Cookie Monster is becoming questionable -Did Sesame Street really start making Cookie Monster eat a healthy diet? – poor fellow). They even had very large sundaes such as the Two Spoon Sundae (a banana split to share). I went with the plain and simple today – a soft vanilla dish with Reeses Pieces. Just what I needed to tide me over until lunch!
In the area: Today was my nieces bridal shower – I wish Courtney and Jay a lifetime of happiness – I am so happy they found each other. I had fun putting together a “just add cheese” basket for them. It had everything they needed for a great wine and cheese party, except the cheese. Jay had to open the wine because Courtney was not quite old enough!
January 28, 2018
Friendly’s Restaurant, Bloomfield, NJ
Friendly’s Restaurants have long been known for thieir ice cream sundaes and tasty food. Today we visited Friendly’s in Bloomfield, New Jersey which was clean, bright and friendly (they earned the “Friendly’s” name). This evening it was on the quiet side. I was pleased to try their seasonal treat, Cherry Magnolia Sundae – Cherry Chocolate Chunk ice cream with brownie pieces, hot fudge, chocolate chips, whipped cream and a cherry. This was an delectable sundae – the flavors mixed perfectly, and I really enjoyed the experience!
Feb. 24, 2018
Crooked Lake Ice Cream Parlor, Hammondsport, New York
Open all year
We stopped into Crooked Lake Ice Cream Parlor in Hammondsport, New York on a nice Saturday morning in February. Hammondsport prides its self as “America’s Coolest Small Town” – and they are not referring to the weather (although in upstate NY you can never be sure, and to be honest we were very disappointed with the lack of snow – we had hoped to get some snow-shoeing in). Crooked Lake refers to Keuka Lake, a Y shaped Finger Lake – apparently Y shaped lakes are quite uncommon around the world.
Anyway, back to the Crooked Lake Ice Cream Parlor When we walked in, we saw an ice cream counter and plenty of small tables, many occupied by other patrons. We sat down at the counter and the server asked us if we were here for breakfast or lunch, to which we replied ‘ice cream’. She seemed rather surprised, but I cannot think of a healthier breakfast or lunch than an ice cream sundae. They had several flavors of Gifford’s ice cream and I chose a turtle sundae with Camp Coffee and Muddy Boots
ice cream. Turtle sundaes come with pecans which I know increases the nutritional value. Don had a create your own sundae with peanut butter sauce and peanut butter cups. The sundaes were attractive, well presented and tasty – amazingly fresh ice cream for this time of year. The staff was very friendly – they told us about Hammondsport and we learned that we chose a bad weekend to visit – there were two big events in town, both of which were sold out – the place would be really crowded for events we could not participate in. At least we totally enjoyed our visit to Crooked Lake Ice scream! Next year we will make sure to get tickets for Sip and Stroll early – a chance to sample wines from several local wineries while strolling around town.
in the area: after a hike to the Finger Lakes Trail, we visited the Finger Lakes Boat Museum – A small, but interesting museum portraying the history of boating on the
Finger Lakes, featuring local boat makers, oar styles, knot types and lots more.
We followed this with a visit the the Great Western Winery– the oldest bonded winery in the United States . I cannot figure out why bonding matters for a winery, or why anyone cares. The winery was founded in 1850 and has been in business
ever since. After tasting ten types of wine, We bought several bottles, including a couple of desert ones to use as ice cream toppings at home. I was interested in the 9 liter bottle of champagne, but I was afraid to even ask how much it cost. I guess that requires a REALLY special event.
December 3, 2017
Dairy Queen, Mahwah, New Jersey
Open all year
Well, the Christmas season is upon us, which can sometimes be problematic for an ice cream blogger. I always feel happy when I actually find an ice cream place open in December, so the Mahwah Dairy Queen was such a pleasure to visit. It was bright, attractively decorated and had both “hot eats” and “cool treats”. The cool treats were amazing – hard ice cream (Kemps and Hoods), soft ice cream and all the Blizzards and other awesome Dairy Queen signature treats. There was a line of “Desserts a la Mode” which included Fudge Stuffed Cookie, Triple Chocolate Brownie and Apple Tart – all a la mode of course (I’d like one of each). I had a pineapple sundae with soft vanilla ice cream which was delicious. Don went with the hot eats and had chicken strips. There were plenty of indoor tables to sit at and enjoy food.
In the area:
Today we went to the Ringwood Manor for their annual Victorian Christmas in which the beautifully decorated manor was open for visitors to walk through. The grounds provided the background for an enjoyable December walk.
January 20, 2018
Race Farm Cafe and Creamery, Blairstown, New Jersey
Open all year
Race Farm is not a new name to me- When our daughters were young, they went with their school to Race Farm for apple and pumpkin picking, and they were always proud of the produce they brought home. I have also stopped by the farm for produce and delicious prepared foods (such as soups and ravioli) over the years. I think their ice cream is a wonderful new addition.
Upon entering the cafe, we immediately saw the ice cream counter with a toppings – there will be more flavors “in season” (isn’t ice cream always “in season”?). In addition to ice cream, there was a full selection of sandwiches and baked goods – even ones that are gluten-free, sugar-free and low carb (what is in it?). The server said that all the recipes were developed in the owner’s kitchen and made in a commercial kitchen. She assured me that they were all very tasty – Don had a chocolate croissant, which is said was “all right”. The sandwich menu looked was eye-catching and the food looked wholesome and really good, but trying that is for another day. True to its cafe name, there was plenty of comfortable seating in a relaxed atmosphere. There were also picnic tables outside.
Now for the important stuff – the ice cream. There were about 8 flavors there today, but this is January, and more flavors are available in the summer. (I eat the same amount all year). One of their specialties was an “Affogato” – ice cream topped with hot espresso – I guess a creative mix of summer and winter. They also featured apple cider doughnut sundaes and brownie sundaes, which give customers a chance to mix the luscious baked goods with great ice cream. I went with the fruit theme today and had pumpkin spice and strawberry ice cream. The strawberry ice cream was delightful. The pumpkin spice was not as much to my liking. I found the spice in the pumpkin spice too strong and the texture grainy. We ate our ice cream outside – nothing like ice cream at snow covered picnic tables!
In the area: This has been a very cold winter. The newspaper had pictures of ice jams in the Delaware River. We went to see them for ourselves. There were lots of giant ice blocks lining the river, and lots of ice chunks flowing down the center of the river, but the river was flowing smoothly. Based on the location of the big ice chunks along the edge of the river, the level must have been much higher a short time ago. We had also hoped to spot and eagle or two, but no such luck.