DCist: The Best Ice Cream In The D.C. Area

Originally published in DCist.com

While frozen yogurt is inexplicably popular and readily available in D.C., nothing beats rich, creamy ice cream. While it’s not as easy to find good, reasonably priced ice cream in D.C. as it is to find chain selling calorically-challenged swirls of cold yogurt, it’s possible. Here are a few of DCist’s favorite options in the area.

Via Milk Cult.

MILK CULT: Incubated at Union Kitchen, Milk Cult specializes in ice cream bars made with local ingredients. I prefer the vanilla with chocolate chip. Simple, clean vanilla is sandwiches between a chewy cookie dotted with semisweet chocolate chips. The bars retail for $3.49 at Glen’s Garden Market, one of the D.C. grocers where Milk Cult is sold. —Sarah Anne Hughes

Milk Cult products can be purchased at Smucker Farms (2118 18th Street NW), Each Peach Market (3068 Mount Pleasant Street NW), Glen’s Garden Market (2001 S Street NW) and Little Red Fox (5035 Connecticut Avenue NW).

MOORENKO’S: Based out of Silver Spring, Moorenko’s offers a huge variety of flavors made with local sourced products. I’m drawn to the chocolate peanut butter, which contains tiny pieces of actual peanut in addition to chocolate chunks. If you can’t make it to their Silver Spring location, pints are also sold at D.C. grocers including Glen’s Garden Market where it retails for $5.99. —Sarah Anne Hughes

Moorenko’s is located at 8030-B Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, Md. It can also be purchased at several grocers across D.C. including Glen’s Garden Market (2001 S Street NW), Giant and Whole Foods.

DOLCEZZA: Let’s get this out of the way: gelato is a lie. It’s a delicious lie, sure, but if the only difference between gelato and ice cream is air, fat, and serving temperature, then whatever, gelato is just fucking fancy ice cream. Anyway, semantics. Ice cream, gelato—whatever you want to call it—Dolcezza Coffee & Gelato offers a wide, rotating variety of artisinal gelato that is as delicious as it is creative. With rich flavors like Salted Caramel and Valrhona Dark Chocolate, along with seasonal ones like Thai Coconut Milk and Peanut Butter Stracciatella, the richness and selectiveness of Dolcezza’s ingredients really shines. Call it whatever you want as long as “delicious” is thrown around somewhere. — Matt Cohen

Dolcezza Gelato & Coffee has locations at 1418 14th Street NW, 1704 Connecticut Avenue NW, 1560 Wisconsin Avenue NW, 2905 District Avenue, Fairfax, Va., and 7111 Bethesda Lane, Bethesda, Md.

ICE CREAM JUBILEE: While Victoria Lai’s ice cream just found a permanent home near Yards Park, she’s been selling her creations at local grocery stores for the past few years and serving it at local events out of a cart. We’ve said it once, and we’ll say it again: Get the Thai Iced Tea flavor. It is insanely good, and a nice break from vanilla that isn’t too wacky. —Sarah Anne Hughes

Ice Cream Jubilee is located at 301 Water Street SE.

THOMAS SWEET: Good luck passing up Thomas Sweet if you find yourself in Georgetown on a summer day. Their colorful menu is super inviting with all the ice cream, frozen yogurt, and sorbet flavors you could ask for — classics like pistachio, butter brickle and mocha chip, and the more unique cotton candy, hazelnut, and lemon custard. But I strongly suggest crafting one of the shop’s signature “Blend-Ins”, consisting of your choice of ice cream and toppings, blended together to indistinguishable, delicious perfection. —Nicole Dubowitz

Thomas Sweet is located at 3214 P Street NW.

PITANGO: Maybe I didn’t understand gelato until I tried it at Pitango, but they made me a believer. Smooth and full of flavor, I’m pulled toward the nocciola (hazelnut) for gelato and the chocolate noir for sorbet. Pitango is up front about how expensive their products are ($6.50) but at least it feels worth it. —Sarah Anne Hughes

Pitango is located 413 7th Street NW, 1451 P Street NW and 660 Pennsylvania Avenue SE.

LARRY’S ICE CREAM: When I moved to D.C., Larry’s was the first ice cream shop I checked out, mainly, because it was the only local option I could find. While my companion was satisfied with his scoop, he could not stop complaining about the price (and the not-so-great service). This is my way of saying: Do not go to Larry’s with someone who’d be just as happy at Dairy Queen. The housemade ice cream is delicious, but you’re going to pay for the taste and for the proximity to Dupont Circle. —Sarah Anne Hughes

Larry’s is located at 1633 Connecticut Avenue NW.

KREIDER FARMS ICE CREAM: I’ve only had the peach ice cream proper, a rich and creamy flavor with big chunks of fresh fruit. But Kreiders supplies the ice cream for the fantastic milkshakes at Lantz Restaurant next door in the Amish market. These huge $3 cups blow away shakes twice the price. Try the intense Chocolate Peanut Butter, the decadently buttery Butter Pecan, the fresh Strawberry; I haven’t yet made my way through all the flavors, but I will. And if you have room left after a big brunch, grab a dozen of the fluffy, fresh donuts at the Stoltzfus Bakery stand. —Pat Padua

Kreiders Farm Ice Cream can be found at the Dutch Country Farmer’s Market, 9701 Fort Meade Rd, Laurel, Md. Thursday 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Friday 9 a.m.-8 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-3 p.m.