According to the New York Times, the ice cream sandwich was first created by a pushcart vendor in Manhattan in the early 20th century. How’s that for cool? Ice cream sandwiches combine two great things: ice cream, and cookies. Below you’ll find our five favorite purveyors of ice cream sandwiches in the New York City area. By Jessica Allen.
Here’s an ice cream sandwich for the ages: the “fast food” at Coolhaus has salted tahitian vanilla ice cream, milk chocolate malt balls, and shoestring fries. Shoestring fries! Or you can mix and match your own ice cream and cookie combo, such as the Netflix ice cream (infused with white cheddar popcorn and Doritos) between double chocolate with sea salt cookies. Follow the NYC trucks online, and plan your day/night accordingly.
François Payard is a third-generation French pastry chef. That’s pretty much all you need to know. His eponymous bakeries around town elevate the ice cream sandwich into something elegant, dainty, and luxurious. The inspired choices of frozen treats include coconut mango and pistachio raspberry. Get your goodies to go from the Columbus Circle bakery, then wander your way around Central Park. Burn enough calories, of course, and you’ll be entitled to another.
As tasty as it is sophisticated, the artigianale from L’Arte del Gelato will transport you from the streets of NYC to Milan, or the French Riviera, or Palermo, anywhere with a Mediterranean flare. The owners of this gelato shop strive to give customers the same delicious joy as they experienced eating gelato as children in Sicily, and they succeed. Their ice cream sandwich begins with a soft brioche bun (just like a real sandwich!), gently supporting two flavors of your choosing.
This is how you do it: the classic ice cream sandwich at Melt Bakery squishes vanilla ice cream between two perfectly chewy walnut chocolate chip cookies. Too ordinary? OK, try the Lumberjack, oatmeal bacon cookies and maple ice cream, or the lovelet, cream cheese ice cream and red velvet “meltcakes.” The ice cream and the cookies are made fresh every day, and the menu changes regularly.
Mikey Likes It Ice Cream does its ice cream sandwich a bit differently, replacing the typical cookie “bread” with waffles. As you munch and lick and groan in pleasure, contemplate the owner’s amazing backstory: after serving time in prison, Michael “Mikey” Cole went to business school, and opened his eponymous shop to peddle healthy, organic, locally sourced ice cream inspired by pop culture—and help the community, particularly by encouraging and supporting inner city kids.