I love ice cream. I mean, who doesn’t? And having a friend who also loves ice cream is great, because you need a partner to visit four ice cream shops in one day with you.
Yes, you read that right. Four ice cream shops. One afternoon. And it was glorious! Did you know that the Atlanta Beltline is a frozen treat hot spot? In addition to four ice cream shops, there’s also the King of Pops. It makes sense, when you think about how much of a sweat you work up on the Beltline.
We visited Jeni’s Splendid in the Krog Street Market, the Queen of Cream, Honeysuckle Gelato in Ponce City Market and Jake’s Ice Cream in the Irwin Street Market. It was fun trying each one in the same day so we could compare. We knew they’d each be great, but different, too.
Ready for a whirlwind tour of the Frozen Beltline? Here we go…
I’ve been smitten with Jeni’s ever since they opened their first Atlanta location on the Westside. An Ohio-based chain, there are now three Atlanta locations.
We shared a single scoop serving, which is actually two scoops. Both flavors were great, but I liked the salted peanut butter more. The honey milk chocolate had whole almonds which wasn’t so enjoyable, and the chocolate flecks in the salted peanut butter melted perfectly.
Come here for: Unique flavors that are guaranteed to be intense and delicious. You can taste each ingredient listed in the flavor’s name, which doesn’t always happen at more generic ice cream shops.
Queen of Cream is a newcomer to the Atlanta ice cream scene. Well, sort of. They started as in ice cream cart, seen around town at events. After building a following they set up shop in the Old 4th Ward. They don’t have as many flavors as other shops, but they focus on quality with local dairy and ingredients. They also offer mini scoops (which are actually not that mini)!
Of the two flavors we tried, the brown butter whiskey pecan was the best. You could taste the whiskey and the pecans added a nice crunch. The coffee with cocoa nibs wasn’t bad, it was just a little icier than I prefer.
Come here for: a fancier, classier touch on your afternoon ice cream outing.
Ever since I tried Honeysuckle Gelato at a tasting event, I’ve been a big, big fan. Their dark chocolate gelato made my skillet cookie even more delicious. Similarly to Queen of Cream, Honeysuckle has been around for awhile, serving ice cream at events and selling pints in grocery stores. After what feels like forever, they finally opened their stall at Ponce City Market.
We had been getting scoops at the other locations, but couldn’t pass on sharing a build-your-own ice cream sandwich, with irresistible options like pie crust, lemon bar and seven layer bar. The toasted marshmallow gelato was so creamy and fluffy and, being a coffeeaholic, the espresso caramel sauce was a no brainer. Pro-tip: Don’t try sharing one of these sandwiches. They’re messy and delicious, get your own.
Come here for: Rich and creamy frozen treats. And for a fun twist on the experience with build your own ice cream sandwiches.
Jake’s Ice Cream is an Atlanta establishment, opening the doors to its original location in 1999. In 2005 it became the anchor tenant of the Irwin Street Market, it’s home ever since. I really love the atmosphere at Jake’s. It’s bright and cheerful and sort of reminds me of being at an ice cream shop by the beach.
Jake’s has so many flavors to choose from with traditional and unique offerings. Have you ever tried “chocolate slap yo mama”? Well you can, at Jake’s. It’s fall, so I had to choose the Pumpkin Piescream at our final stop. It was loaded with pieces of pumpkin pie! The cherry was a nice, refreshing flavor.
Come here for: Creative flavors that are served in generous portions in a fun atmosphere. Also a one stop shop for lunch!
Don’t ask me to a pick a favorite…because I can’t! Each ice cream shop was delicious and special in its own way. I would say, though, that while I like Jeni’s I prefer to keep it local and would opt for one of the other ice cream options in the area. Depending on what your taste buds are looking for, though, you can’t go wrong. Just make sure you burn it off on the Beltline after!