As the summer heat sets in, ice cream is a sweet treat to help us cool off. There are many local ice cream parlors and many big name brands throughout Saint Joseph County.
You may be wondering where is the best place to get a good ice cream. After speaking with several St. Joseph County residents, an informal vote gave us a few places with the best ice cream.
The most recommended place to get ice cream in St. Joseph County is the Sand Lake Party Store.
The ice cream shop is located at the Marathon gas station on the M-86 in Nottawa. Not only can you get gas there, but inside you can get classic gas station snacks, fresh meats, deli, wine, beer, groceries, and of course, ice cream in the parlour.
When St. County residents were asked. Lots they give you and the ice cream is creamy and good.
Manager Cassondra Huff said they can eat 400 gallons of ice cream per week during the open months from April to September. They have 48 different flavors and out of those flavors, the most popular is Butter Pecan with Mint Chocolate Chips that follow.
There are many sizes at Sand Lake that can range from one scoop for $3.25 or five scoops, also known as a belly ache, for $8.25, but most tend to use two scoops in a waffle cone.
And to top off the ice cream, they have a few different toppings, but the most requested is the hot fudge.
“Generations have come here for the huge portions and smiley faces,” Huff said.
Another local favorite is Lil Chicks. This property is located within Roosters Wing Shack In Three Rivers on North Main Street.
Prices range from $3.45 per scoop to about $6 for a barley or milkshake, said Eliana Price, an employee at Lil Chicks. In one week, Price estimated that they go through about six or seven gallons of ice cream depending on the month, which Price believes the MOO-Ville ice cream they carry is really good.
The ice cream they carry usually consists of 10 base flavors they keep each year during the open months and another 10 they switch to each week.
Among those flavors that are switched every week, the most famous are biscuit, cream, super cow and sea monster. The most common way to order ice cream is a single scoop in a bowl, and the most popular accompaniment to ice cream is the classic sprinkles.
When Price was asked why she thought they had the best ice cream in St. Josep County, she said, “The ice cream is really good, and Lil’ Chex has a great atmosphere and great people.”
Finally, another place to get ice cream is a new place for Sturgis. Freakin’ Sweets on West Chicago Road.
This establishment opened on May 27 with owners Mindy and Chris Merrill.
They said, “We wanted to bring a modern ice cream shop with a touch of exclusivity into our small town for our girls, our family and our community.”
Chris provided insight into how this unique and modern ice cream shop performed in its first few weeks of operation.
He said they offer 16 flavors of ice cream made in Plenwell. During the first week on the job, they ate 150 gallons of ice cream. On the menu there are many different things to choose from, regular scoops of ice cream with toppings, ice cream in a cone, regular milkshakes and you can even make your own ice cream cake sandwich.
Besides offering regular milkshakes, they also serve “exotic shakes” which happen to be the most popular item on the menu. The most common flavor for an exotic shake is peanut butter, not jellytime. These shakes are topped with candy, cake, pop tarts and more. The most expensive item on the menu is also a Strange Shake at $10, but they have the basic cone of ice cream for $2.50.
Besides the most popular shakes, they serve plain ice cream in a bowl, but if you’re looking for spice with the most common garnishing requests are gummy bears. Although they are fairly new, Chris said they are doing a good job.
There are also a few other sites that people recommend, such as Yup’s Dairyland located in Middlebury, Indiana. This is a local place that you can only find in Middlebury. Other big competitors are Dairy Queen’s and Culver’s big-name franchises. You can find two DQs and two Culver’s in St. Joseph Country.
- On average, Americans consume about 23 gallons of ice cream each year.
- 90% of Americans eat ice cream regularly.
- The United States produces 6.4 billion pounds of ice cream and frozen yogurt annually.