Searching for the (ice) cream of the crop? Look no further.
Food & Wine dubbed two Cambridge ice cream shops — Toscanini’s and Christina’s Homemade Ice Cream — as the best in Massachusetts in their list of the best ice cream in every state, released June 17. Amid the pandemic, to qualify for a spot on the roundup, a shop had to have “at least a year or two of uninterrupted production, hopefully longer, allowing each maker to settle in and find its groove.”
Get the scoop on the two shops below.
Toscanini’s, a Kendall Square ice cream icon since 1981, had the Food & Wine critics swooning. “All these years later, and with everything that’s changed, Tosci’s feels just as fresh and relevant as ever,” the magazine wrote, “scooping up two of the most essential flavors in the country: the punch-in-the-schnoz burnt caramel, and nostalgic cocoa pudding.”
Toscanini’s is home to a host of other deliciously creative flavors — all homemade in store — including blackberry goat cheese, gingersnap molasses, peanut butter jam graham, among the more traditional vanilla and chocolate varieties. In the mood for something besides ice cream? They also sell coffee from Barismo and Batdorf & Bronson, teas from MEM Tea, and baked goods from Iggy’s or made in store. 159 First St., Cambridge. Open Wednesday through Sunday, noon-11 p.m. 617-491-5877. tosci.com.
Founded in 1983, Christina’s Homemade Ice Cream is a sweet stalwart. The quaint purple storefront in Inman Square offers indulgences like coconut Butterfinger and malted vanilla, along with seasonal scoops like eggnog and apple pie, according to its Facebook page. They also boast a lengthy sorbet menu.
“To this day, very few shops are quite so good on flavors as Raymond Ford and his talented crew,” Food & Wine wrote, recommending a cone or cup of their Bailey’s Irish Cream concoction. 1255 Cambridge St., Cambridge. Open Sunday-Thursday, 11:30 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 11:30 a.m.-10:30 p.m., 617-492-7021. facebook.com.
If you’re jonesing for a wider tour of dairy delicacies as National Ice Cream Day (July 18) approaches, try Food & Wine’s other New England recommendations, including Arethusa Farm in Connecticut; Little Gordo Creemee Stand in Burlington, VT; Annabelle’s Natural Ice Cream in Portsmouth, NH; Gelato Fiasco in Maine: and Wright’s Dairy Farm in North Smithfield, RI.
Dana Gerber can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org