Now that it’s finally summer, it’s ice cream time, you guys!
Not that all the time isn’t ice cream time. It’s just that as soon as the temperature hits around seventy-five, I suddenly feel the urge to replace all my meals with ice cream and beer. I can’t be the only one who feels this way, can I?
Luckily, getting my summer beer fix isn’t too hard to do in Kalamazoo, where there’s a fabulous microbrew or funky bar around every corner.
However, getting your daily allotment of ice cream in this town sometimes means you have to travel a bit farther afield. Luckily, the distance is totally worth it. But then again it’s ice cream. So the distance is pretty much always worth it.
Plainwell Ice Cream
Located about fifteen miles away from Kalamazoo, Plainwell Ice Cream has pretty much everything you could possibly want in an ice cream shop: a quaint interior, friendly staff, ample outdoor seating, and a whole lot of amazing ice cream that’s freshly made at the shop.
The flavors range from your basics to your more exotic – like Lemon Chiffon, French Silk, and Caribbean Caramel — and the servings are more than generous. And by “more than generous,” I mean “at least enough to count as your lunch for the day.”
If you’re not up for the drive, The Spirit of Kalamazoo in downtown Kalamazoo also serves Plainwell Ice Cream.
Address: 621 East Bridge St, Plainwell, MI, 49080
Treat Street is something of a surprise. Despite being tucked in a shopping plaza on Oakland Drive, it has a old fashioned, corner store vibe to it. They sell a hodge-podge of things — from pickles to penny candy.
But, of course, the main draw is the ice cream from Sherman’s Ice Cream in South Haven. They have a range of intriguing flavors, including something called Maple Bacon. Yes, that’s totally an ice cream flavor that exists.
Address: 3023 Oakland Drive, Kalamazoo, MI, 49008
Let’s Swirl Frozen Yogurt
Located on West Main Street, Let’s Swirl has a make-your-own-frozen-yogurt-sundae bar. And, best of all, they offer unlimited sample cups, so you could try out the different flavors of frozen yogurt before making a commitment. Let’s just say, it’s possible I tried every flavor.
I eventually settled on the Cable Car Chocolate and Cake Batter frozen yogurts with some Reese’s Cup crumbles, crushed Oreos, and mini-chocolate-covered pretzels. It made for quite a lovely dinner. And it’s healthy because it’s yogurt, right?
Address: 5021 West Main St, Kalamazoo, MI, 49009
Phone: 269-903-2662 or 269-903-2663
Ritter’s Frozen Custard
I discovered Ritter’s shortly after I moved to Kalamazoo last year, and I’ve been more than a bit obsessed about this place. In fact, it’s entirely possible I drove past it almost every week during the spring in the hopes that it would finally be open for the season.
While they serve a number of different shakes, sundaes, ices and other concoctions, I’ve only ever tried their hand-dipped frozen custard because it’s the most amazing thing on the face of the Earth. In case you’re not familiar with frozen custard, it’s basically what happens when ice cream and heaven have a baby. For real.
Their selection of flavors change on a daily basis, so it’s a good idea to check out their Facebook page to find out what they’re serving that day. Or, you know, you could just drive there every single day like some kind of weird ice cream creeper. Not that I know anyone who does that. (I totally do that.)
Address: 217 Romence Rd, Portage, MI, 49024
What’s your favorite place to get ice cream?