Best Ice Cream (and Custard) Chains

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Re:Best Ice Cream (and Custard) Chains 2011/08/05 11:44:02 (permalink)
Mrs. Metro and I love frozen custard.
In NoVA:  Frozen Dairy Bar in Falls Church, Carl's in Fredericksburg, Dairy Godmother in Alexandria, and Milwaukee Frozen Custard, Chantilly and other locations.
Here in the Metroplex there is an excellent family-owned place we enjoy in "downtown" Frisco: and a Culver's in McKinney.  The place that served the best product, Sheridan's, ( ) closed down their two Metroplex locations due to poor planning and huge overhead.  They had beautiful, new free-standing 1500 sf buildings that were walk-up only, no seating.  As I write this we are "enjoying" our 35th. consecutive 100+ degree day with "parking lot" temps in excess of 120.  As good as their product was, there was no way Texans were going to wait in line, then sit in their cars in these climate conditions.   Another custard chain, Freddy's opened across the road from the old Sheridan's, offers indoor seating, and seems to be doing very well.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
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Re:Best Ice Cream (and Custard) Chains 2011/08/05 12:24:47 (permalink)
Holly Moore

I miss Tom Carvell, master TV spokesperson.  Never did battle with Fudgie The Whale, he still around?

My best friend and I have been exchanging Fudgie the Whale cakes, along with Cookie Puss cakes (very cleverly renamed "Cookie O'Puss around St. Patrick's Day) for decades as a gag.  Funny thing is, we always eat every bite. 
A bit of really useless trivia: the Santa Claus cake and the Fudgie the Whale cakes are made in the same mold.  Fudgie's tail becomes Santa's hat. 

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Re:Best Ice Cream (and Custard) Chains 2011/08/05 12:50:49 (permalink)
Jim, after shopping a Sam Moon's I spotted Freddy's. That was my second try at frozen custard.
We left Texas on I think day number 23 of the record heat.  
I really found Culver's vanilla to have more flavor, but I sure wouldn't say no to Freddy's.
I Googled frozen custard in Los Angeles and everything points to frozen yogurt.  Not as good!
The Travelin Man
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Re:Best Ice Cream (and Custard) Chains 2011/08/05 15:00:20 (permalink)

The Travelin Man


I like both Graeter's and Handel's, but would give a clear edge to Graeter's.  But, I will take Jeni's out of of Columbus over either one.  Jeni's doesn't have that many locations, but I can buy it in my local grocery store.

I know you are not much of a do-it-yourself guy when it comes to the kitchen, but a friend just bought me the Jeni's "cookbook."  It's really well done.  I am seriously considering purchasing an ice cream maker now.

What would be the odds of me coming up with a fried chicken or pastrami-flavored ice cream?

Is the cookbook strictly ice cream?

I haven't seen other recipes, but there is a lot of theory behind the ice cream making process - so, it's more than a cookbook in that is more than just a compilation of recipes.  There may be other recipes in there, but I haven't found them yet.
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Re:Best Ice Cream (and Custard) Chains 2011/08/06 03:36:04 (permalink)

Anybody ever try Rita's or BOPS?

Some company bought TCBY a few years ago and run it in the ground.  Green shades at work.

I first tried Rita's in Allentown, PA a few years ago.  I was happy they opened a store in Knoxville.  The franchisee told me that Rita's would not allow her to sell anything but their products which makes the place become a money drain in the winter.  BOPS I think is mostly in the south.  My experience does not offer much to compare those to against but I have certainly enjoyed both their products.

Paul E. Smith
Knoxville, TN

Paul:  I've tried Rita's.  Not a fan.  They call their (overly sugared IMHO) soft-serv frozen custard - it's not.  They put layers of "custard" and water ice in a tall serving cup and call it "gelato" - not even close.  And they close up from Halloween to sometime around Easter.  The Rita's closest to me used to have people lined up much of the day - until Handel's opened up in the next town.  Apparently, people can tell the difference.
Also there were about half a dozen Dairy Queens fairly close to me, and they are all gone now.   A Bruster's near me also closed (although others in the area are still open - none of them very close).  I guess cold desserts (I won't call what Rita sells "ice cream" and DQ barely qualifies) is a tough business. 
Friendly's seems to be operating straight out of the HoJo's playbook with a lot of the same menu items.  I don't think the ice cream is as good (and they don't have 28 flavors) and the cleanliness of many of them is more like a turnpike HoJo's than a neighborhood location. 
Junior Burger
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Re:Best Ice Cream (and Custard) Chains 2011/08/06 17:51:11 (permalink)
A sure sign of spring is when "Zesto's" opens.
10 locations in a 40 mile radius of Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Softserve would be an insult to what served here. Vanilla, Chocolate and Twist cones do the job for Mrs. Bear and I. They have the usual treats but in our opinion nothing is usual with going to Zestos!!!!

Holly Moore
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Re:Best Ice Cream (and Custard) Chains 2011/08/06 18:40:39 (permalink)
Rita's mixture of Italian Ice and Ice Cream is called "Gelati" to distinguish it from Gelato.  Rita's copied it from Italiano's in South Philadelphia.

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Re:Best Ice Cream (and Custard) Chains 2011/08/07 14:18:35 (permalink)
Stricklands in Akron, OH one near the Akron Canton Airport the other near Medina about 2 miles west of Summit Mall.
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