Ice Cream that Changed My Life
While many of us have favorite spots and flavors to hit each summer, those who scoop the sweet stuff day in and day out have had some life-changing ice cream. Here are the childhood stories and scoops that shaped these St. Louis ice cream makers’ careers.
Executive Pastry Chef, Pastaria
“One of the things we got to do (when my dad would take over cooking) was make ice cream sundaes for dessert and choose the different things we want in there. … So I got some vanilla ice cream and a big spoonful of peanut butter. I really liked peanut butter between two graham crackers dipped in milk, so I thought, “Well, I have to crush up graham crackers, and stir that in.” I also really liked bananas as a kid, so I sliced those over the top after I mushed it all together. I still like it – one of my favorite ways to eat vanilla ice cream is with a spoonful of peanut butter; I smear it all over the top. I did it for the tasting I did for Gerard (Craft, chef-owner of Pastaria) to get the job – a banana gelato with a peanut butter swirl and graham crackers.”
Co-owner, Ices Plain & Fancy
“We used to always go to car shows with my dad, and then we’d go to Ted Drewes and get Flying Dutchmen (chocolate, butterscotch and pecans with vanilla custard). Everyone’s happy when they’re eating ice cream. There’s not any pretention or anything with it. It’s a relief to be doing something like that for a living now.”
Owner, Clementine’s Naughty and Nice Creamery
“Every Sunday after church we would go home and make ice cream. … The flavor we always made was my mom’s specialty and favorite – it’s on my rail today, and it always will be. It’s called Tommy’s Toffee Butter Brickle. I named it after my brother because my mom would make it, and the next day we’d wake up and it would be gone. We’d all get in trouble and everyone was like, ‘I didn’t do it!’ And my brother would come out of his room and he’d have it all over his face and his pajamas. But he would never cop to it.”
Owner, Serendipity Homemade Ice Cream
“(My parents), over all the years of driving back and forth to Baltimore, where my dad is from, found a place called Tom’s Ice Cream Bowl (in Zanesville, Ohio) … I went on a solo road trip a couple of summers ago and ended up driving through Zanesville. My father passed away the weekend Serendipity was supposed to open 13 years ago, so he never got to try my ice cream. I found myself sitting outside of Tom’s totally enveloped in this bowl of ice cream … and I had a good cry, just sitting there, remembering all the trips we made and how much my dad loved that place.”
Owner, Crown Candy Kitchen
“When I was little – my family’s in the ice cream business and I would still beg my mother to drive to St. Charles Dairy so I could have Raspberry Ripple ice cream. I don’t know what it was about it. I look back on that now and think, ‘OK, I must have been a pain in the you-know-what to make my mother drive to an ice cream place to buy ice cream that’s not ours.’”
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