Portland has become a serious ice cream town. Ask anyone in Portland (or at least the food nerd-types we asked) and they have strong opinions about where to get the best scoop.
Salt and Straw was the new kid on the block last year and still has lines snaking out the door and down the block. The newer kid, What's the Scoop, opened this July and uses liquid nitrogen to fast-freeze the cream (ooh, liquid nitrogen). Then you have Cool Moon, around since 2007, which almost feels old-school now.
When Maggie and I decided to eat all of the ice cream in Portland (well, sort of), we were met with many outstanding flavors. So many, we ended up sampling almost every single one on the menu first (so many tiny spoons) before committing to a scoop. Ooh, bourbon coffee...or should we go try that foie gras s'mores flavor—wait, that's really a flavor? Yes, and it was part of Salt and Straw's chef series where chefs from around the city, this one came from the restaurant Ox, develop a special flavor.
Many of the Portland ice creameries use Pacific Northwest ingredients: marionberries (a hybrid berry; no relation to the former DC mayor), hazelnuts, sea salt from the Oregon coast, Stumptown coffee, and milk from Lochmead Dairy in Junction City, Oregon.
Here are some of our favorite flavors around town!
Saint Cupcake's Coco Caramel with Oregon Sea Salt
Saint Cupcake's Oregon Peach with Hazelnut Crunch
Salt and Straw's Coffee Bourbon
Cool Moon's Thai Iced Tea and Kulfi
Ruby Jewel's Black Orange Licorice
Ruby Jewel's Toasted Coconut Soft Serve
What's the Scoop's Bananas Foster