Whether ice cream is beloved for its creamy goodness, nostalgic reminder of childhood or refreshing effect on a steamy summer night, one thing is certain: Everyone screams for a delicious scoop.
Many disagree about the flavors that reign supreme — cookie dough or mint Oreo — but at a few area parlors, there’s something for everyone.
Betty Jane Homemade Candies
Location: 3049 Asbury Road, Dubuque.
The scoop: Betty Jane Homemade Candies has been a fan favorite since 1938, and its smooth, rich ice cream has survived the test of time. Many flavors incorporate the shop’s signature chocolate candies — the Gremlin, Gremlin-Nilla, English Almond Toffee and Willy Boy ice creams are particular favorites. The shop has 24 flavors available at all times.
Beecher’s Ice Cream & Yogurt
Location: 1691 Asbury Road, Dubuque.
The scoop: Beecher’s is a Dubuque hotspot. On any given day, children can be seen lining the stone wall, drip-coated cones in hand. Old South Fudge and M&M Brownie are among the location’s most beloved flavors. If you’re looking for a lighter summer treat, try its daily frozen yogurt special. In addition to its fro-yo, you can choose between soft serve and 16 flavors of ice cream. It also has a variety of specialty sundaes. Chow down on a brownie sundae for an indulgent night out.
Ice Cream, U Scream
Location: 198 Main St., Dubuque.
The scoop: This Main Street creamery never fails to satisfy a sweet tooth. With 24 flavors, Ice Cream, U Scream offers something for everyone. The Raspberry Lemon Italian Ice is a refreshing nondairy dessert, whereas This $&@! Just Got Serious is rich (salted caramel ice cream, salted cashews and sea salt fudge — what more could you want?). Try its Nacho Sundae, which treats people to three hearty scoops of ice cream with waffle cone “chips” to dip.
Jitterz Coffee & Cafe
Location: 1073 Main St., Dubuque.
The scoop: Jitterz offers delightful coffee drinks, but that’s not all. Choose from four ice cream flavors for a sweet post-coffee treat. You can experience the best of both worlds by ordering your ice cream affogato-style: Espresso poured on top. Test it out with the Mississippi Mud flavor — mocha ice cream packed with chocolate sandwich cookies and a gooey fudge swirl.
Location: 454 W. Fourth St., Dubuque.
The scoop: Adjacent to the famous Fenelon Place Elevator, Sweet Memories appeals to hungry customers each day. Not only does it have a variety of homemade chocolates, candies and trinkets, but it also serves 16 flavors of ice cream. Try its cappuccino flavor, and treat your kids to a homemade cone filled with Superman ice cream. They do not serve sundaes or malts, but you can get an all-in-one experience by ordering the turtle sundae or chocolate malt amoré ice cream flavors. The creamy chocolate malt flavor is to die for.
Location: 306 S. Riverview St., Bellevue, Iowa.
The scoop: Grandpa’s Parlour offers a variety of flavors, from classics like chocolate chip cookie dough to unique concoctions like Zanzibar Chocolate, which includes three kinds of cocoa. A classic sundae lets the parlor’s homemade hot fudge shine. For a decadent dessert, order the Brownie Barge, which boasts smooth vanilla ice cream topped with homemade brownies and hot fudge, whipped cream and a cherry.
American Old Fashioned Ice Cream Parlor
Location: 102 N. Main St., Galena, Ill.
The scoop: Step back in time by visiting the American Old Fashioned Ice Cream Parlor, complete with vintage soda bottles and homemade waffle cones. You can choose from 32 creative ice cream flavors. The Tortoise and the Fair is a caramel lover’s dream. If you’re in the mood for more than a simple scoop, try the Dirt Sundae. The ice cream topped with Oreo crumbles and gummy worms will leave you staring wistfully at your empty bowl.
Three Sisters Sweet Shoppe
Location: 224 N. Main St., Elizabeth, Ill.
The scoop: This pink-clad sweet shoppe’s treats are worth the short drive from Dubuque to Elizabeth. The store offers ice cream, homemade cupcakes, gifts and toys. Try the Kitty Kitty Bang Bang ice cream — cheesecake base swirled with raspberry ripple and stuffed with Oreo pieces and chocolate chunks. Any ice cream flavor can be ordered as a milkshake. If a boozy espresso shake sounds like the cure for all your worries, choose the Exhausted Parent. To taste both the handcrafted cupcakes and unique ice cream concoctions, order a cupcake ala mode. Play around with fun combinations. You can choose any flavor of either dessert. Raspberry Rhapsody ice cream with a Lemon Drop cupcake, anyone?
Ava Hoelscher is a freelance writer from Dubuque.