There's something about a cold metal spoon, especially the long ones for parfait glasses, to shovel up ice cream. The metal probably isn't helping the ozone layer or saving panda bears, but it's just one of those things you leave alone. As biodegradable food packaging has become more available, more ice creameries are offering specialized bowls and utensils instead.
You can spot it right away: the slightly gritty mouth feel and off-white color. It was made of corn, potato starch, soy oil, or something else that sounds edible, and it belongs in a separate trash bin.
Recently I was digging into some at Blue Marble in Brooklyn with friends when this concern (yes, it's extreme ice cream minutiae) came up. The corn-based scoopers don't conduct heat as fast as metal so the ice cream doesn't feel as cold. Blue Marble co-proprietress Alexis Miesen was on our side, but pointed out that they're still better than plastic. "They're somehow richer, more texturized than the flat slick surface of the plastic spoons."
Usually when eating ice cream, the brain isn't too critical. Ooooh, iiiiice creeeam is about as advanced as my mental process gets, but it's interesting to see the evolution of the ice cream-eating experience. Do you think our earth-hugging tendencies are compromising the basic joys of frozen dessert?