Cool off this summer at some of Calgary’s best spots for sweet frozen treats.
AMATO GELATO CAFE
This Italian café on Kensington Road is known for its wide selection of homemade gelatos and sorbettos. From coconut mango swirl to cookies and cream, their 72 flavours ran the gamut from typical to unusual. Also on their menu is a selection of frozen yoghurts, non-dairy tofulatis and low-sugar gelatos and sorbettos. Enjoy any of their frozen treats on their sidewalk patio.
Also known as Leavitt’s Ice Cream Shop, this family-run ice cream parlour is designed like a ‘50s soda shop and located just off the Bow River Pathway. Try one of their regular flavours in a homemade waffle cone, or a pick of the month such as raspberry cheesecake or Turtle. Enjoy the store’s player piano while you eat your cone, which staff play upon request. Lic’s also makes ice cream cakes, which can be ordered in advance for special occasions; flavours include mint chocolate chip and chocolate fudge.
MACKAY’S ICE CREAM
A Cochrane landmark, this ice cream parlour is best known for its extra-creamy homemade ice cream. Made from a family recipe and using the highest butterfat cream available, MacKay’s has been in business for over sixty years. Enjoy some of their favourite flavours such as mango or chocolate peanut butter—served all year round—or try a seasonal flavour such as Mini Egg Hunt for Easter and gingerbread at Christmas.
MARBLE SLAB CREAMERY
For those who like to design their own dessert, Marble Slab is the place to go. Pick from the different varieties of waffle cones dipped in chocolate and candies, or a waffle bowl. Next choose an ice cream flavour such as birthday cake, key lime or coffee, and select your “mixins.” You can mix two or three ingredients into your ice cream, including fruit or crushed chocolate bars and candies. All your selections are then mixed together on a cold marble slab. If you find the number of decisions too daunting, you can try one of their already designed creations or a milkshake made with plain ice cream.
MY FAVORITE ICE CREAM SHOPPE
People may come to My Favorite Ice Cream Shoppe for the wide selection of ice cream flavours, but they stay for the atmosphere. Situated in the neighbourhood of Marda Loop, the shoppe is decorated with a collection of ice cream memorabilia, from black and white photos and vintage signs to old church pews lining the walls. Ice cream flavours remain consistent with old favourites such as brownie meltdown and candyfloss, as well as new varieties such as After Eight. Piano players can also get their ice cream free by playing the shoppe’s instrument for a minimum of 10 minutes.
This Inglewood dessert bar is a spot for the true connoisseur, with a wide selection of cakes and tarts paired with wines and coffees. They also serve their own made-from-scratch ice cream and sorbet, available in their retail shop and served in a homemade cone or take-home carton. Try one of their original ice cream flavours such as blue cheese or Mexican vanilla, or enjoy a fruit sorbet made from guava, blackberry or honey tangerine. —Elena Redd