A Sweet Summer Smile

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Ice Cream, the quintessential summer treat that stirs up fond childhood memories of Dairy Queen and time spent with my dad. Ice cream is an amazing desert that is both simple and complex. Something as simple as cream, eggs, sugar and vanilla can give way to scientific concoctions with sophisticated flavor profiles and ingredients that read like a potion. I guess it must be magic since ice cream tends to make most of us feel better. Living in Los Angeles, we are fortunate to have a wonderful climate that makes enjoying ice cream year-round a wonderful reality and something to smile about.

In honor of National Ice Cream Day (which falls on July 15th this year), The Nation put together a very small sampling with some of our favorite spots.

SomiSomi, K-Town – Home to those beautiful fish shaped cones popping up in our Instagram feeds the last year. Ah-Boong, as it is called in Korea is a stuffed cone topped with soft serve and it is as delicious as it is beautiful!

Chill Rollz, Noho Arts District – Their philosophy is simple, “Eat Ice Cream, Be Happy”. This North Hollywood shop customizes every order with simple bases and custom mix-ins in a fun colorful store. Choose from their menu or create your own. The delicious individualized concoctions are rolled to order in front of your eyes and is part of the charm.

Coolhaus, Culver City & Pasadena - With mutual backgrounds in the design and real estate fields, founders Natasha Case & Freya Estreller, began naming their ice cream sandwiches after architects and architectural movements that inspired them – and eventually decided to take their newfound passion (dubbed “Farchitecture,” or Food + Architecture) to the streets in Los Angeles.

Salt and Straw, Various locations from Venice to the Valley – Portland based scoop shop that started as a fanciful dream of founder Kim Malek and took ice cream to the next level. Rotating flavors, farm to table mentality and an artisanal craft equate to long lines and happy smiles.

Fatamorgana, Studio City – Currently their only location outside Italy, this artisanal gelateria makes kitchen magic with nearly 100 flavors of dense deliciousness. Their mission: “we turn Nature’s secrets into gelato and then we reveal them to the world.” It’s working!

McConnells, 3 locations Grand Central Market, Los Feliz, Studio City – This Santa Barbara based chain has been in business for nearly 70 years. They produce amazing ice cream in a responsible and sustainable way. Their goal: “we hope to enrich and enliven the communities in which we live and work, and leave the world just a little bit “sweeter” than we found it.” They have succeeded in spades! 

What's your favorite ice cream spot? The Nation wants to know!