Ice Cream

Gelato in Isla Mujeres and more from the San Francisco bay area. I hopefully won’t end up in the copy and paste jail. I’m pretty sure I attributed authors and captions correctly from the Chronicle. From my paid SF Chronicle Subscription, for you…

But first, from me Isla Mujeres: Best Gelato in Isla Mujeres:

Gelateria Monte Bianco

Visit this cafe to have a meal if you are hungry after gazing at El Centro. Here you will be offered nicely cooked Italian gelato, panna cotta and tiramisu. According to the visitors’ opinions, waiters offer delicious espresso or great lemonade. 

A number of people say that the service is fabulous. Prices at Gelateria Montebianco deserve attention because they’re affordable. The charming atmosphere might make you want to stay here for a bit longer than you’ve originally planned. This place is rated on Google 5 by its guests. Rated numero uno by this guest!

Now, from the Chronicle. Their bottom tag line was:

This story has been updated to remove two shops that closed.

Serena Dai is The San Francisco Chronicle’s senior food and wine editor. Email:

The 10 best ice cream spots in San Francisco and the Bay Area

Dreamy, creamy and full of joy, here are the standouts — whether you eat dairy or not

Ice cream is a year-round sport in the Bay Area considering the weather, but summer’s still a prime time to get a cone. Our proximity to luscious dairy means ice creams celebrating the best of milk fat, and our proclivity for seasonality means rotating sorbets and gelatos that highlight peak produce.

Though it’s hard to go wrong with ice cream here, some producers have risen above the rest — whether it’s with inventive flavors or the simplicity of sweet, fatty cream. Mainstays like Mitchell’s and Bi Rite are still slinging ice cream that will make you close your eyes and sigh on a hot sunny day, while newcomers such as Randy’s are finding new ways to twist nostalgic flavors into ice cream, such as with a popcorn salted caramel creation. Those who can’t eat cow milk have plenty of standout options, too. Many of these shops excel at inventive cashew or coconut ice creams, including India-inspired Koolfi Creamery’s jaggery churned with coconut milk.

Bi Rite Creamery

One of the best known names in artisanal food in S.F.

Kris Hoogerhyde holds a chocolate ice cream bar at Bi-Rite Creamery in the Mission.
Janelle Bitker / The Chronicle

Bi Rite, which opened in 1998, is one of the best known names in artisanal food in San Francisco, and its ice cream still holds up even as it has expanded to freezer aisles in grocery stores. Favorites like the honey lavender or cookies and cream are usually available year-round in the Mission District creamery or at the Ferry Building Saturday food truck, but in line with Bi Rite’s celebration of the seasons, there’s always a selection of changing flavors, too. In the summer, go for the creamy yet balanced balsamic strawberry, either in a cone to take to nearby Mission Dolores Park or in a pint for home. All accoutrements — brownies for sundaes, cookies for ice cream sandwiches — are made in-house, and they’re all as pristine as the ice cream. — Serena Dai

3692 18th St., San Francisco

Curbside Creamery

The rare scoop shop that does it all extremely well

Scoops of Bourbon Whiskey Vanilla Ice Cream and Coffee Bean Ice Cream sit in a homemade chocolate waffle cone at Curbside Creamery on 49th Street on Sunday, July 15, 2018 in Oakland, Calif.Liz Moughon/The Chronicle

It’s hard to ignore the buttery smell of freshly made waffle cones coming out of Curbside Creamery, a tiny spot located in Oakland’s trendy Temescal Alley. It’s also the rare scoop shop that does conventional ice cream, vegan ice cream, soft serve and ice cream sandwiches extremely well. Truly, it’s hard to go wrong. Classic flavors sing, from the tart and creamy lemon to the bold coffee featuring beans from Oakland’s Bicycle Coffee Co. About half of the rotating options are cashew-based vegan ice creams, making Curbside a strong choice for groups with mixed diets. — Janelle Bitker

482 48th St., Oakland

Koolfi Creamery

An inventive spot celebrating flavors from India

A Koolfi Creamery cone of salted caramel with Mysore pak, strawberry with chocolate, and mango ice cream on a dosa waffle cone at Zocalo Coffeehouse in San Leandro, Calif. on July 31, 2019.Celeste Noche / Special to The Chronicle

Jaggery caramel, ghee-roasted almonds and mango lassi: Koolfi Creamery’s ice cream is a celebration of flavors from India. Priti Narayanan’s inventive ice cream is creamy and thought-provoking, like her take on salted caramel, amped up with crumbles of Mysore pak, a South Indian chickpea ghee fudge, or Kamala Blossom, a lotus seed and rose flavor Narayanan created in honor of the country’s first female vice president, Kamala Harris. Koolfi also makes several vegan ice creams, including toasted black sesame and jaggery churned with coconut milk. Find Koolfi pints at stores in San Francisco, the East Bay and Peninsula, or order online for delivery (four pint minimum). — Elena Kadvany

San Leandro. 

Lush Gelato

A purveyor of unique flavor combinations

Gelato from Lush Gelato, a shop located in North Beach in San Francisco.Allie Tong / Lush Gelato

Always anticipate that Lush Gelato will offer some unique flavor combinations — though always executed with rich, saturated intent. Options have included cardamom with a house-made lemon bar, brown butter and chocolate honeycomb, and mango and pepper. Owner Federico Murtagh, who’s been in the business since 2006, often calls out local producers in flavors, such as Cowgirl Creamery cheese or McEvoy Ranch olive oil. A scoop from its North Beach storefront goes well in a waffle cone while strolling the neighborhood, but there are more elaborate options too, such as a chocolate bonbon filled with peanut butter gelato and toffee. Check its Instagram for flavor updates. — S.D.

520 Columbus Ave., San Francisco. 

Milkbomb Ice Cream

Asian flavors shine at this Berkeley destination

Aqua Dreams, a blue vanilla base with cookies and brownie bites, sits on top of a scoop of Vietnamese coffee-flavored ice cream from Milkbomb Ice Cream in Berkeley.Janelle Bitker / The Chronicle

Milkbomb’s Instagram-ready ice cream doughnut sandwiches look like a lot: They’re loaded with colorful, quirky flavors like Lucky Charms and matcha avocado, then showered with sprinkles, cereal and bruleed-to-order marshmallow cream. But even ice cream purists shouldn’t miss Milkbomb. Out of its small shops in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill and Berkeley, the creamery sells plenty of unadorned scoops that draw loyal fans for their dense, chewy texture. Asian flavors particularly shine here, such as ube and Manila Mango — both use produce sourced from the Philippines. Check Yelp for the most up-to-date hours as the stores slowly reopen. — J.B.

1717 17th St., San Francisco. 2079 University Ave., Berkeley. 

Mitchell’s Ice Cream

A Mission District icon that’s just as good as ever

Ice cream from Mitchell’s, the Noe Valley institutionMitchell’s Ice Cream

The line regularly extends down the block for a scoop at Mitchell’s, the Mission District icon that’s been in business since 1953. Mitchell’s doesn’t miss with its ultra-long menu of smooth and airy ice creams and sorbets, whether it’s for a classic like strawberries and cream or a less ubiquitous flavor like lucuma, the caramelly South American fruit. The original Mitchell family still runs the shop, and though it’s an old-school operation, its range of flavors speaks to its dedication to evolving. Since its debut, options such as mango, ube, horchata and halo-halo have been added. — S.D.

688 San Jose Ave., San Francisco. 

Mr. Dewie’s

Pioneering, dairy-free East Bay ice cream destination

Fudge swirl ice cream from Mr. Dewie’s Cashew Creamery, a vegan outfit with locations in Oakland, Albany and Emeryville. 
Arya Damany

In business since 2011, Mr. Dewie’s has been making smooth, rich vegan ice creams long before every local shop started adding dairy-free options to its lineups. The outfit’s secrets are fatty cashew milk and organic ingredients — resulting in scoops popular enough for Mr. Dewie’s to expand to three locations in Oakland, Albany and Emeryville. Unlike some higher tech dairy replacements to recently hit the market, cashew milk still tastes like cashews, so the best flavors complement the nutty backdrop. Think caramel almond crunch, turmeric spice and, of course, roasted cashew. — J.B.

1116 Solano Ave., Albany. 5959 Shellmound St., Emeryville. 4184 Piedmont Ave., Oakland.

Mr. & Mrs. Miscellaneous

Gently sweet, airy ice creams that are worth seeking out

Left to right, Ube (made from purple yams), Flan, and Fruity Pebbles Ice Cream is featured at Mr. and Mrs. Miscellaneous on Monday, July 16, 2018 in San Francisco, Calif.Liz Moughon/The Chronicle

It can feel a little bit agonizing trying to get a scoop of Mr. & Mrs. Miscellaneous if you’re not paying close attention to this Dogpatch shop’s elusive schedule — noon to 4 p.m. Wednesday-Friday and noon to 6 p.m. Saturday — especially since its pints aren’t sold in other stores. Seeking out these organic, gently sweet, airy ice creams is worth it, though. The chocolate chip flavor is pure nostalgic joy, with tiny shards of bittersweet chips punctuating the smooth ice cream base. Even creative options like Hawaiian Punch and Dark ‘n’ Stormy are subtle, allowing the creamy textures to outshine any bold flavors. Try the macapuno, a type of young coconut popular in the Philippines, with its chewy bites of coconut flesh and just-barely-sweet tropical richness. — Esther Mobley

699 22nd St., San Francisco.

Noble Folk

Seasonal ingredients and changing flavors are the focus at this Sonoma Country favorite

Sonoma County’s Noble Folk ice cream is known for its unconventional flavors like black sesame, horchata, and Thai teaNoble Folk Ice Cream & Pie Bar

Sonoma County natives Ozzy Jimenez and Christian Sullberg translated the success of their Healdsburg bakery Mustache Baked Goods to open this ice cream and pie destination in 2014. Noble Folk’s not-too-sweet ice creams rely on seasonal ingredients with the flavors changing regularly, but fan favorites like the black sesame coconut stay on for good reason. The most recent set of flavors includes a fruity roundup with options like passion fruit, blood orange raspberry and triple berry pie. Grab a slice of one of Noble Folks’s many pies to pair with the ice cream if you’re not planning to get it in a cone. In addition to the Healdsburg outpost, Noble Folk has a location in downtown Santa Rosa. — Tanay Warerkar

116 Matheson St., Healdsburg. 539 Fourth St., Santa Rosa. 

Uji Time

Silky soft serve offered with playful fixings

Uji Time’s matcha ice cream, one of its best selling productsCourtesy of Uji Time

Uji Time burst onto the Bay Area ice cream scene with silky soft serve placed atop its freshly baked taiyaki — the Japanese fish-shape cakes that are usually filled with red bean paste — in Berkeley in 2016. That combination is just as good as ever, even after the shop’s expansion to five locations in the Bay Area. Soft serve flavors including ube, matcha and black sesame are still the way to go here, but those looking to take some ice cream home can grab a pint of Uji Time’s yuzu passion fruit, red velvet or Hong Kong milk tea, among other flavors. If you do opt for the soft serve, be sure to ask for some of the extra, playful fixings like pocky sticks and sprinkles. — T.W.


Published by WriterPaints

I write and I paint, I like to see what I can do with a camera. I hike and bike and travel. In warm weather, I swim. I'm a listener and I read. I'm a proud member of I'm lucky to have great friends, a large and beloved family. I enjoy my own company and manage to be happy most of the time. I love the outdoors.

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: