SAN FRANCISCO — A little boy in a bike helmet, dragging a scooter, presses his nose against the curved glass panel of a freezer and gazes at the buckets of ice cream, a study in bright hues of pink, green, yellow, and various shades of chocolate brown. Then he licks the glass.
In the pantheon of foods with universal appeal, ice cream ranks right up there with . . . well, arguably with little else. Given the retro allure of everything from horn-rimmed glasses to antique barware, it was only a matter of time before someone revived the once ubiquitous soda fountain. Enter Juliet Pries, who last year opened the Art Deco-accented The Ice Cream Bar Soda Fountain in San Francisco’s Cole Valley neighborhood. Since then, legions of ice cream fanatics — members of the Greatest Generation and the SpongeBob set alike — have walked in and gone “googly-eyed,” as Pries calls it, deliberating between banana pudding and butterscotch, or sweet corn and basil. All of it is housemade.