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Restaurants & Bars

I Found the Weirdest Ice Cream Flavors in Austin, TX

Mexican marigold and blueberry swirl (photos by Carol Shih)

I’m a whole day late to the National Ice Cream Day scene because I ran away to Austin this past weekend and ate an elephant’s weight worth in food. Still, on National Ice Cream Day, I managed to snarf down an entire cake cone with three scoops at Lick, an artisan ice cream shop, before I finally headed back to Dallas and daydreamed about my icy treat all the way home.

Yesterday was my first time at Lick, which opened in the fall of 2011 on 2032 South Lamar, and I was told by my ice cream tour guides that it didn’t have any traditional flavors like chocolate or vanilla. Instead, the tiny Austin shop offers selections like cilantro lime and coconut & avocado curd – flavors that you don’t expect to be kid-friendly, but actually turns out to be everyone-friendly. I spotted several families with kids licking their fingers and cones outside even though these ice cream flavors were made for more adventurous taste buds.

(Top to bottom) goat cheese, thyme, and honey; beets and fresh mint; orange chocolate

My ice cream cone had a scoop each of orange chocolate; roasted beets and fresh mint; and goat cheese, thyme and honey. Though I expected the goat cheese to be overwhelming, it was surprisingly light, yet still savory and sweet. The Mexican marigold and blueberry swirl was another beautiful marriage between two ingredients you don’t usually find in an ice cream flavor. And the best thing about Lick? Its ice cream consistency isn’t at all like the popular Amy’s ice cream. Every Austin visitor always makes a pit stop at Amy’s for its creamy, melt-five-seconds-after-you-buy-it quality ice cream, which annoys the bejeebus out of people like me who like to lick – not slurp – our frozen treats. Lick’s ice cream is more sorbet-ish compared to Amy’s, but it hasn’t lost any of the milkiness that’s necessary to good ice cream. All the organic milk and cream that goes into these artisan desserts come directly from Texas, which is another reason why Lick’s concoctions taste pretty incredible.

My apologies to all of you Amy’s fans, but I have to go ahead and say this: Next time, skip the crummy, overhyped Amy’s and try a scoop of Lick’s. Once you lick, you can never go back.

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