As the weather warms up, there’s no better way to celebrate summer than with a great cone of ice cream. Somehow, nothing says “Summer!” like ice cream, a treat we love watching our kids enjoy and one that never gets boring or old. Whatcom County is home to three expert, locally-sourced, ice cream makers, so there’s no shortage of innovative flavors coupled with all-time favorites. If you need a feel-good treat for your day, something cool, sweet, colorful and unique, here’s where to get it!
Mallard is a much-loved downtown Bellingham institution where the ice cream is so good, there’s almost always a line to order. Flavor tags are handwritten on a chalkboard above the counter, walls are brightly painted and a shelf is kept stocked with board games, crayons and activities to keep kids busy while their parents are ordering.
Ben Scholz, Mallards’ owner, made his name in the business with homemade ice cream and a selection of creative, innovative flavors you won’t see in most ice cream shops. There’s turmeric, earl gray, coconut chocolate chunk with almonds, avocado, almond butter and vanilla black sesame. Feel like a cardamom scoop? You’ll find it here. And vegans or lactose-free seekers will love the choice of non-dairy flavors – coconut ice, lime ice, black currant and fresh rhubarb ice. There’s also all the typical flavors you’ll find in any ice cream shop – regular vanilla, strawberry and chocolate.
Prices range from $2 for a half-scoop up to $5.90 for a triple scoop. Check out Mallards at 1323 Railroad Ave. Bellingham (hours from 11 daily) and at www.mallardicecream.com.
Edaleen Dairy is another local favorite, a family farm with over 2,500 milking Holstein cows whose milk is used to make the Brandsma Family’s amazing ice cream. Edaleen is a combo of the names Ed and Aileen Brandsma, who started the small family business in Lynden back in 1975. “We started with vanilla, which remains our top seller along with bubblegum, and we’re always adding and subtracting flavors,” said Mitch Moorlag, general manager. This year’s newest flavor is peanut butter blast and in the fall, cranberry fruit medley will debut for the holidays. Other flavors include raspberry cheesecake, chocolate chip peanut butter nut, cappuccino chip, white chocolate raspberry, fudgy wudgy (and who could resist a name like that?) and coffee almond fudge.
You can spend a long time tasting before you select a flavor – the choice is that difficult. Once you do, though, you’ll notice the cost is very light on the pocketbook. Edaleen’s is the most reasonably priced ice cream in the county, and one of the few places where a kid can get a scoop for 95 cents. A regular scoop will set you back $2.10 and a large sells for just $2.65. (And it’s large!). Edaleen has ice cream stores in Lynden, Blaine, Sumas and Ferndale and some are open as late as 10pm. Just don’t visit on Sundays – all the stores are shuttered on Sundays.
Check out Edaleen Dairy at edaleendairy.com or visit at:
- 9593 Guide Meridian Rd Lynden
- 1011 E. Grover St Lynden
- 458 Peace Portal Way Blaine
- 908 Cherry St Sumas
- 5905 Portal Way Unit 103, Ferndale
Like the sound of ice cream in flavors including butter pecan, cantaloupe, strawberry rhubarb, apple pie (with locally grown Bellewood Acres’ apples!), eggnog, amaretto and Zab (rich custard and sweet marsala wine)? Then you need to visit one of the two scooping locations for Acme Ice Cream in Bellingham. Acme Ice Cream comes from Acme, WA, a small dairy town along the Nooksack River in the shadow of Mt. Baker. The company uses local, hormone-free milk from Whatcom County cows for its ice cream, which, it says, is made with “lots more cream” and “never any air,” resulting in “a much purer ice cream.” Flavors like fudge brownie contain fudge brownies baked from scratch, the chocolate chip contains melted dark chocolate swirls, and the nuts for butter pecan are freshly roasted. For as many of its ingredients as possible, Acme partners with local farmers and coffee roasters.
Scoops cost $3.68 for a single and $4.77 for a double (no kids’ sizing available). The store is open from 7 a.m., so if your penchant for sweet treat kicks in super early, be assured you have a place to go at Acme Ice Cream.
Check it out at 1021 Harris Ave. (inside the Rocket Donuts store), or at 306 W. Holly St.,360-366-8135 or online at www.acmeicecream.com.
Cool Stats on Ice Cream
- The US is number two in the top five ice cream consuming countries in the world (measured per capita, in gallons per year)
- 87%: Americans who report having ice cream in their freezer at any given time
- 48: average number of ice cream pints Americans enjoy each year
- 50: number of licks it takes to finish a single scoop
- Brain Freeze: the phrase used to describe the feeling when ice cream touches the roof of your mouth