By Mark H. Stowers
Summer means cold sweet treats and ice cream tops the list. The metro Detroit area is known for dozens of frozen deliciousness. With Sunday being National Ice Cream day, let’s take a look at some of the more popular stops for ice cream. Stay cool with this Top Ten Ice Cream Shops – in no particular order.
Clarks – Berkley’s cold slice of heaven on 12 Mile Road opens every day at noon and serves till 10:30 on weekdays and 11:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The store favors Premium Ashby’s Sterling Ice Cream and offers up more than 40 flavors for the picky ice cream aficionado. Amaretto Cherry, Bear Claws, Cookie Jar, Cow Tippin’, Chocolate, Vanilla and even Eskimo Kisses all call Clark’s home for incredible frozen flavors and combinations. They offer hard scoop yogurt, sherbets as well as non-dairy delights as well.
Treat Dreams in Ferndale is just that – and then some. Flavors change but some include Peanut Butter Brownie, Mint Chip Super Sammy, Death By Chocolate, Salted Caramel, Vanilla Bean, Dark Chocolate Chocolate Chip, Cherry Dr. Pepper, Fruity Pebbles, Kooky Monster and several more. These are all created but in limited amounts and don’t always last the whole week. Go early and often to this Woodward location. They open each day at noon and close at 9:00 p.m. but stay open till 10:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Serving the most original and innovative homemade Ice Cream in Michigan is their foundation.
Golden Cone – formerly known as Shaker’s, this small Madison Heights store is wedged in a small space but bursting with ice cream fun and deliciousness. There’s also a Royal Oak location on Fourth Street. The Madison Heights location has a walk-up counter or cozy drive thru, their concoctions will make you turn around and get back in line again and again. With a mission to capture the nostalgia of the old fashioned ice cream parlor, they offer 30 flavors of the Northville’s famous Guernsey brand Ice Cream. There are Vegan options and Dole Whip Soft Serve, Ice Cream Sandwiches, Sundaes, Parfaits, Shakes and Malts as well as novelty Ice Cream and Popsicles. From Strawberry to seasonal offerings as Pumpkin Spice and Caramel to Grandpa’s Blueberry Pie, Birthday Cake and plenty more. They open at 3:00 p.m. each day and close at 9:00 p.m. except Friday and Saturday until 10:00 p.m.
Ray’s Ice Cream, located on Coolidge Highway in Royal Oak is open 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. each and every day. They opened the doors in 1958 as a neighborhood ice cream parlor and soda fountain focusing on quality ice cream and great customer service. Now in their eighth decade, Ray’s is still a hot item for cold, sweet treats. Step back in time in their 1950s era store or find a selection of their ice cream in local stores. With more than 50 delectable flavors – chocolate to butter pecan to white Russian to lime sorbets and everything in between, there’s something for everyone.
Pagos Ice Cream Rolls and Drinks – Stroll over to Washington Avenue in Royal Oak for a new twist on frozen favorites. This southeast Asian style of frozen treat starts as a liquid on a frozen griddle that freezes the cream and your favorite flavors are “chopped in” and rolled just for you. The Perfect Matcha, Oreo Free Tonight?, Brrrberry, Ain’t Nobody Got Thai For That! And Halo How Are You? are just a few of the flavors frozen and blended on the spot just for you. Robert Brownie Jr, The S’More the Merrier and more await your visit to this creative ice cream store. They open at 3:00 p.m. each day and close at 9:00 p.m. and Friday and Saturday at 10:00 p.m.
Jim’s Frostie Treats – another Royal Oak frozen treasure! Since 1969, the staff have created old school and delicious Hot Fudge Brownies, Banana Splits, Dole Whips, Shipwrecks, Super Bowl, Artistic Frosties, Hot Fudge Cake and a whole lot more to satisfy your sweet tooth. Oreo Fudge Bombs and Strawberry Crunchers are just a bit more of what Jim’s offers in this family owned seasonal ice cream shop. Get over to 11 Mile Road as they open at noon Monday through Friday and at 1:00 p.m. on the weekend but close at 11:00 p.m. each night.
Frosty Freeze – Berkley rivals Royal Oak with incredible ice cream shops and this Coolidge location hangs with the best. Self-proclaimed as the “Best Ice Cream Store in Berkley,” you’ll find soft serve, hard ice creams twisted and concocted into dynamite frozen flavors you can’t get enough of. Amaretto, Apricot, Banana, Black Berry, Black Cherry, Butter Pecan, Coconut and Coffee are but a few flavors. Crème De Menthe, German Chocolate, Pina Colada and the list goes on and on till your heart’s frozen desire. They open each day at 12:30 p.m. and close at 10:00 p.m.
Dairy Deluxe – Birmingham makes an appearance on the “Gotta Have It” ice cream shop list. This Woodward and 14 Mile area store offers a wide variety of sundaes, flurries, soft serve with available dipped flavor coatings as well as a plethora of hard ice cream flavors to try and choose from. The Boston Cooler is to die for and the prompt service keeps the line moving and the cold treats flowing. Now open from 1:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Custard & Co – Another Royal Oak Ice Cream Treasure sits on Woodward and always has a line that moves quickly. Soft serve and hard ice cream flavors are swirled and dipped and drizzled with love and Pineapple, Black Cherry, Blue Raspberry and even Watermelon. But hang onto the traditional vanilla and chocolate for a sweet ride that will satisfy even the pickiest sweet tooth. They serve up their treats each day from 1:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
With so many more Ice Cream Shops, what’s your favorite? Make your own Top Ten or Twenty List. Summertime and Metro Detroit Ice Cream Shops were made for each other. Search out these and others and don’t forget to tip those bringing you your favorite frozen delight.
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