Thursday, October 13, 2016

IT'S-IT Ice Cream

IT'S-IT.  The OTHER San Francisco treat.

I don't know about you, but I hadn't ever heard of IT'S-IT, until I came to San Francisco.  Within about one week of arriving though, I knew IT'S-IT.  I rode past their factory alongside the 101 every day.  And, at that time, my office had a freezer stocked with IT'S-IT for me to enjoy, daily.  (I know, life was tough).  Somehow, I probably only ever had a handful of them back then, when they were abundant and everyday.  I missed out.

It had been several years since I had an IT'S-IT when I was at a party with them, so I tried one, as there were no other dessert options.  And then a few weeks later, they were being randomly given out on the street.  And then, again, just a few weeks later, our pastry team was short staffed, so they ordered us IT'S-IT.  All of a sudden, IT'S-IT was back in my life.

So, for those not from San Francisco, what is IT'S-IT (besides a really hard to properly type name?).  They are ice cream sandwiches and the company has been in production in San Francisco since 1928, really, a pretty impressive feat.  To be fair, until the 1970s they were available exclusively at Playland (which no longer exists).  From there, they opened a shop in SF, and by the 1980s, they were being shipped to a few other states.  You can get them anywhere in the US now, if you order online.

So, the products?  IT's-IT makes ice cream sandwiches.  Only ice cream sandwiches.  The original version was two oatmeal cookies, filled with vanilla ice cream, dipped in chocolate.  They now fill them with a variety of ice cream flavors, like chocolate, strawberry, mint, cappuccino, and of course, everyone's seasonal favorite, pumpkin.  I also learned that they've mixed things up and have introduced "Chips IT" with chocolate chip cookies instead of the oatmeal ones, and a "Big Daddy" with more chocolate biscuit-wafers, but, the majority of the items they produce are the classic IT'S-IT.

Anyway, these aren't my favorite ice cream treat ever, but, the ice cream really is higher quality than what you find in most packaged ice cream novelties, as is the chocolate coating, and the cookies, while I don't love them, do work great for ice cream sandwiches.
Standard IT'S-IT Packaging: Chocolate.
All IT'S-IT come individually wrapped.  The logo color changes out based on the flavor (pink for strawberry, green for mint, and so on).
Vanilla: Inside.
"A large scoop of vanilla ice cream, sandwiched between two old-fashioned oatmeal cookies, and dipped in dark chocolate."

All IT'S-IT use the same "old-fashioned oatmeal cookies".  They are a hard style cookie, and have a nice heartiness to them, but, not really my sort of cookie ... if I was just eating a cookie.  The firm nature of them is helpful for an ice cream sandwich, and they hold up well.

The entire sandwich is dipped in dark chocolate, covering the cookies and the ice cream edges.  The chocolate is great, and my favorite part actually.  It really is quality chocolate, better than most standard ice cream novelties.

The vanilla version is the most basic, and I didn't find the vanilla ice cream particularly notable.  The vanilla flavor and the oatmeal cookies was a nice combination though, and I thoroughly enjoyed my basic Vanilla It's-It.
Chocolate IT'S-IT: Inside!
"A large scoop of chocolate ice cream, sandwiched between two old-fashioned oatmeal cookies, and dipped in dark chocolate."

The next time, I went for chocolate.

The chocolate version has, well, chocolate ice cream inside.  Besides that, it is identical to the vanilla: same cookies, same chocolate shell.

The ice cream had a nice chocolate flavor, and was shockingly good for packaged ice cream.  I really liked how the chocolate coating and this chocolate ice cream went together.  My favorite flavor.
Pumpkin IT'S-IT: Inside!
"A large scoop of pumpkin ice cream, sandwiched between two old-fashioned oatmeal cookies, and dipped in dark chocolate."

Finally, I tried the pumpkin one mostly out of curiosity, not because I love pumpkin spice everything season.

The cookies were again the hard style I didn't really love, and I again really liked the chocolate coating.  The ice cream was creamy and melted nicely.  The pumpkin flavor was actually pretty good, not too spiced, no getting punched by nutmeg here.

Overall, good, but I preferred the chocolate.
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