Among the many things Portland excels at: Ice Cream. Turns out we're terrific at making it. We're also very good at eating it, and seeing as this weekend is home to "National Ice Cream Day" (it's on Sunday. Get it? GET IT?) and this weekend is also probably going to be pretty warm, it might be a good idea to order a couple scoops, or even a couple pints, from some of the following creameries, most of whom have non-dairy and vegan options, and all of whom offer either takeout, pickup, or delivery!
When they say "handcrafted rolled ice cream," they really mean that. It's not just a clever turn-of-phrase: This place really does roll-up your ice cream, and they're more than happy to mix stuff into it, from candy, to marshmallows, to... Flamin' Hot Cheetos?
Purveyors of "super-premium" ice creams, Beaux Berry is best known for their magic ice cream machine they had imported from New Zealand that blends (or swirls, more accurately) real fruit, berries, herbs, and other-mix-ins into your soft-serve cones or bowls.
CLOUD CITY ICE CREAM
A strong contender for best ice cream joint in Portland, Cloud City has too many bests to choose from! Okay fine, go for the Sea Salt Cookie Dough... or better yet, the Chocolate Toasted Coconut... or to top ’em all, the Unicorn that pairs red velvet cake and a swirl of strawberry in creamy vanilla. Goddammit, just get all three. WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY
DAIRY HILL ICE CREAM
That traditional ice cream shoppe (with the e and everything) vibe is alive and well at Dairy Hill, down to the sundaes put in little baseball helmets, banana splits and ice cream cakes on the menu, and handmade ice cream sandwiches they consider to be their specialty.
EB & BEAN
Not ice cream: Frozen Yogurt. But frozen yogurt made with the sort of care and consideration that gourmet greatness deserves, with rotating seasonal flavors, no artificial ingredients, and locally sourced toppings aplenty. Our EIC calls it "soft-serve perfection," and when it comes to frozen desserts, he's definitely something of an expert.
This is the ice cream that happens when a food nerd and former brewer focus all the powers culinary science can muster into making ice cream from scratch with just the right texture and all the right flavors, including "Chocolate AF" and "Water Avenue Coffee."
HURRY BACK ICE CREAM
This ice cream cart deep in the heart of Sellwood may seem unassuming, but they’re pumping out some of the best ice cream in Portland. While there’s a lot to choose from, start off with their Rocky Road, filled with chocolatey richness, macadamia nuts, and marshmallows. Easy to see why this is a fave for kids and adults. WSH
Little Chickpea's ice cream doesn't involve cream at all; Their dairy-, soy-, and gluten-free flavors are all made from milking sustainably produced chickpeas, and they use what's left over to make gluten-free flour for their waffle cones and pastries. The biggest difference between this chickpea ice cream and the more commonly sold dairy-based treat was that I didn't feel heavy and in need of a nap after the chickpea version. I think I've died and gone to dairy-free heaven. JENNI MOORE
Don’t sleep on what I consider to be the best ice cream franchise in the city, Ruby Jewel. (And yes, I will fight you!) While their Caramel with Salted Chocolate flavor is a crowd favorite, my taste buds went nutz for the Salted Honey with Almond Brittle, which is a crunchy/sweet delight that kicks up to perfection with a hint of salt. Damn, that’s good. WSH
SALT & STRAW
This local chain is nationally recognized for a very good reason: They take big swings (remember when they did a whole ice cream Thanksgiving dinner, complete with turkey, stuffing, and mashed potatoes & gravy flavors?) and hit home runs with startling consistency. If you're feeling at all adventurous, chances are Salt & Straw's handmade ice cream will come in a flavor that would have never occurred to you before it became your absolute favorite.
WHAT'S THE SCOOP
This North Portland creamery serves up small-batch premium ice cream and sorbets infused with locally sourced ingredients. They not only take care to make sure their goods are all-natural and hormone-free, but they also strive towards sustainability and make sure they're donating a portion of all their proceeds to community organizations. Oh yeah, and their ice cream is flat-out delicious.