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Best Ice Cream in New York City

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So Long, Mr. Softee

Few things inflame the passions of New Yorkers on a hot day quite like the subject of their favorite ice cream. Just ask the Platt girls. Daughter No. 1 (Jane, age 11) enjoys elegantly creamy European-style gelati served in long tapering cones. Daughter No. 2 (Penelope, age 8) eats vanilla soft-serve only, preferably encrusted in a thick layer of rainbow sprinkles, gummy bears, or both. Recently, we spent a contentious couple of weeks haggling over our favorite frozen treats. We slurped sundaes in old-fashioned ice-cream temples in Forest Hills, argued the merits of trendy artisanal toppings in the wilds of Brooklyn, and tasted countless varieties of fancy Manhattan gelati on hundreds of tiny plastic spoons. Here, the results of our labor, ranked in order of preference from one to sixteen. In the cases where the girls agreed to disagree, their weary, sugar-addled dad broke the tie.

WINNER: Éclair Cone

Dessert Club, ChikaLicious (240 E. 10th St., nr. First Ave.; 212-475-0929)

Daughter No. 1 praised the structure of this inventive soft-serve creation. Daughter No. 2 enjoyed the vanilla soft-serve and “sugary bottom part.” Either way, it’s the epitome of big-city, summertime-ice-cream chic.

2. Stracciatella Gelato

L’Arte del Gelato (75 Seventh Ave., nr. 15th St.; 212-924-0803)

The buttery cone is made in front of you, and the smooth, chocolate-laced gelato was the best we tasted. “I like it, Dad,” said Daughter No. 1. “It’s very delicate on the tongue.”

3. Sundae of Broken Dreams

Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain (513 Henry St., nr. Sackett St., Carroll Gardens; 718-522-6260)

The girls prefer the root-beer floats at this retro soda fountain. They’re wrong. This crunchy, pretzel-laced vanilla-and-caramel sundae is better.



4. Caramel, Espresso Chip, and Honey Lavender Cone

Il Laboratorio del Gelato (188 Ludlow St., at Houston St.; 212-343-9922)

Whatever gelato you choose (Dad voted for espresso, the girls for caramel and honey lavender), it’s hard to go wrong at this famed factory.