Pumpkin Pie Blizzard at Dairy Queen
Dairy Queen brings out the pumpkin pie Blizzard once a year, and come on. Just put it on the regular menu. It is the king of Blizzards. It tastes just like a pumpkin pie, but in Blizzard form. It’s so good.
Sweet Potato Hash at Uncle Betty’s
This is the type of thing I’d normally write a full post about (I haven’t even written about Uncle Betty’s on this blog, though I did try the burger for Tasty Burgers), but honestly? I don’t want to. I mean, look at it. It’s basically just a pile of cubed sweet potatoes with some onions and a little bit of spinach interspersed throughout. No particular seasoning that I could taste, no caramelization or crispiness… just a bunch of bland sweet potato topped with a couple of poached eggs, and served with a slightly congealed cup of hollandaise on the side. It tasted as sad as it looks.
Chocolate Shot at Soul Chocolate
I was actually hoping to get the delicious soft serve from Soul Chocolate, but alas, when I went they had just stopped serving it for the season. I don’t know who came up with the notion that you can only have ice cream in the summer, but that person is a criminal and deserves to go to jail. So I got the chocolate shot instead, and it’s very good. It’s not quite on the level of the version they serve at Soma; it’s got an odd sour note that I found a bit off-putting, but is otherwise deeply chocolatey and thoroughly satisfying.
Location: 14B Brookers Lane, Etobicoke
I’ve been back to Lola’s a couple of times since my first visit in 2018, and I think they’re just getting better and better.
On my first visit I found the gelato to be above average, but nothing that’s worth getting too excited about. Now, on the other hand, I think maybe you should be getting a little bit excited. It’s very, very good.
I had Peach Blueberry Sundae, which features a really delightful combo of fresh peach and blueberry flavours. It hadn’t even occurred to me that those two fruits would work so well together, but clearly they do because the flavour is delicious.
And the texture is just right, with a really satisfying level of creaminess and absolutely none of the iciness that you sometimes get in fruity ice creams. It’s top notch.
Location: 160 Baldwin Street, Toronto
Kensington Market seems like the kind of area that should have a whole bunch of ice cream shops, but it’s surprisingly slim pickings. There’s a location of Dolce Gelato, a temporary outpost of Good Behaviour, and now this place — but that’s about it.
(There have been other shops over the years, of course, but the turnover in this area is bad even when there isn’t a pandemic to deal with.)
Boho Gelato has a pretty standard assortment of flavours, though there are a couple of unique ones. Rosewater particularly caught my eye; I don’t think I’ve ever seen that in gelato before. It’s a common ingredient in Middle Eastern desserts, with a very unique flavour that’s somewhat of an acquired taste (I hated it with a passion as a kid, but it eventually won me over).
The gelato itself is definitely above average, though it didn’t knock my socks off. But that rosewater flavour is clearly a winner. I got it with a scoop of pistachio, and not surprisingly, the two flavours go perfectly together.
Location: 1448 Dundas Street West, Toronto
I’ll admit that I tried Honey’s — a dessert shop that specializes in “premium plant-based ice creams” — more for the novelty value than anything else. I mean, isn’t plant-based ice cream an oxymoron? That can’t possibly be good, right? Right…?
Wrong, it turns out. And I’ve never been so delighted to be wrong.
They have about a dozen flavours to choose from; I went with peanut butter & saltine, and I was shocked at how good it was. The consistency was probably a bit thinner than traditional ice cream, but if you just handed it to me without context, I don’t think I would have guessed that it’s dairy-free.
It’s rich, creamy, and intensely peanut buttery, with nice pops of flavour from the saltines; their texture has been transformed into something almost cakey, and they work perfectly with the peanut butter ice cream (“ice cream”? Should that be in quotes?).
I’m very curious to come back and try some other flavours, because how is ice cream without cream this good? Has my whole life been a lie??
Cherry Sundae at Tom’s Dairy Freeze
I mean, come on: if you go the whole summer without going to Tom’s Dairy Freeze at least once, was it really the summer? I submit that it was not. It’s certainly not the most exciting ice cream joint in the city, but they’ve been pumping out consistently great no-frills soft serve for decades, and it’s a million times better than the stuff you’ll find at chains like Dairy Queen or McDonald’s. On this particular visit I got a sundae with chocolate ice cream and cherry sauce, and yeah, that’s a great combo. The sauce is excessively sweet (it tastes like maraschino cherries in a thick syrup), but then that’s kind of the charm of a place like this.
Roasted Almond and Sicilian Pistachio at Soma Chocolatemaker
I’ve mentioned before that Soma serves some of the best gelato in the city, and yeah, it’s still top notch. I recently tried roasted almond and Sicilian pistachio, and both flavours were rich, creamy, and deeply flavourful.
Malai Kulfi and Mango Chocolate Chip at Nani’s
I don’t think I need to spend more time on this blog on the greatness of Nani’s Gelato. I’ve thoroughly covered that. So I’ll just say that on a recent visit I tried malai kulfi and mango chocolate chip, and both flavours were unsurprisingly fantastic. Malai kulfi, in particular, had that perfect Nani’s balance of a unique flavour and amazingly creamy gelato. As for mango chocolate chip, I’ll admit I was a bit skeptical about the combo of mango and chocolate, and… to be honest, I’m still skeptical. But the mango ice cream was so delicious that I thoroughly enjoyed it, despite the flavours not working particularly well together.