Sunday, August 26, 2012

Ice Cream from Mr. & Mrs. Miscellaneous

I'm a huge fan of frozen desserts, but regular ice cream isn't what I normally gravitate to.  That said, when I want a scoop of hard ice cream, Mr. & Mrs. Miscellaneous is where I go.  They are my favorite ice cream shop in the city.  For once, the Yelpers aren't wrong: there is a reason they have 600+ Yelp! reviews and a 4.5 star rating.  

The ice cream is all made fresh daily from high quality ingredients (local, organic Strauss dairy is the base, the mix-ins are all made in house, etc).  Flavors change daily, featuring both traditional flavors and some more adventurous ones.

They also make fresh waffle cones, but have always been sold out when I've gone.  I sorta think they are a myth :)  I've never tried them, but they also make their own fudge, caramel, and other sundae toppings.  And a selection of cookies, caramels, malted milk balls, marshmallows, and other candies.

San Francisco has a number of ice cream shops that meet all of the above criteria.  So what separates Mr. & Mrs. Miscellaneous from the rest?
  • Indoor seating.  Plentiful indoor seating.  No eating your ice cream outside on the freezing cold, windy streets of SF.
  • Samples! They not only don't act annoyed when I want to try flavors, but they encourage it! When I apologized for being indecisive once and asking for so many samples, the server responded with a smile and told me to sample away, that is what they were there for. Also, samples are given with full size real metal spoons and generously loaded up so you definitely get to taste it and see if you like it.
  • No lines (ok, this is less true these days, but the lines aren't nearly as long as other places).  And no hipsters.  The crowd is mostly just super cute kids loving their ice cream.
I'll certainly return.  The hardest part is just deciding what flavor, when they are all soooo good!
  • Banana Graham: Tasting notes: Subtle banana flavor, little chunks of graham, not very good somehow.
  • Black forest: Vanilla ice cream with huge chunks of chocolate cake, Kirsh soaked cherries.  Tasting notes:  I liked the components of this, but would have preferred to just have a nice chocolate cake with ice cream and cherries.  That is, the cherries and cake being IN the ice cream didn’t really add anything to it.
  • Brown Butter: Tasting notes: Super sweet, nice flavor.
  • Brown Butter Sage: Tasting notes: nice complex flavor and sweetness, but didn’t really taste the sage.
  • Cake and Cream: Sweet cream ice cream with chunks of chocolate cake.  Tasting notes: Cake was decent chocolate cake, but mixed into the ice cream just wasn’t that interesting.
  • Candied Violet: Tasting notes: Beautiful, subtle, balanced flavor.
  • Caramel with Sea Salt: Tasting notes: Sweet caramel flavor, not much saltyness.  Was good but couldn’t imagine a whole scoop of it on its own.  Would probably be really good with a scoop of another flavor and hot fudge/whipped cream [ Very sweet, nice caramel flavor, but can’t imagine eating a whole scoop of this on its own, would need something to cut the sweetness. ]
  • Chocolate Malt: Tasting notes: Just kinda standard chocolate, didn't get any malt in my sample.
  • Cream Cheese & Carrot Cake: Tasting notes: really rich cream cheese flavor, nice size chunks of really delicious carrot cake.
  • Crema Catalana: Lime ice cream with burnt caramel.  Tasting notes: subtle lime flavor, didn’t really get much of the burnt caramel, meh.
  •  Croquantino: Carmelized hazelnuts, hazelnut base, orange peel.  Tasting notes: super creamy with nice chunks of the carmelized nuts.
  • Flan: Tasting notes: Sweet, nice caramel swirl.
  • Halva: Sesame ice cream with sweet sesame swirls.  Tasting notes: Very sweet, lots of sesame flavor.  Bites with the caramely/sesame swirl were really quite good.
  • Jasmine Green Tea: Tasting notes: Lovely flavor, not too sweet, winner of the day.
  • Lemon Verbena: Tasting notes: Nice lemon flavor but not very interesting.
  • Peanut Butter & Jelly: Vanilla ice cream with big swirls of peanut butter and jelly.  Tasting notes: Was ok, but flavors weren’t that strong.
  • Pink Squirrel: Almond and creme de cacao.  Tasting notes: A nice sweetness, my favorite, but I was pretty sick of it by the end of my scoop. [ Nice and sweet, good almond flavor, would go well with hot fudge? ]
  • Peanut Brittle: Tasting notes: Decent peanut butter flavor, little chunks of brittle, sweet.  Definitely would have been better with more chunks of brittle, and larger chucks of brittle.
  • Rocky Road: Chocolate ice cream with almonds and marshmallow.  Tasting notes: fairy standard chocolate ice cream, almonds were nicely toasted, good marshmallow but kinda chewy and hard inside ice cream.
  • Salted Mango: Tasting notes: Nice mango flavor, not too sweet, didn't really get salty flavor though.
  • Sweet Cream: Tasting notes: Exactly what you'd expect, boring flavor on its own, would be good in sundae.
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