Grab your cones, grab your cups—it’s ice cream season, everyone. Almost every survey you look at still has vanilla and chocolate topping the list of most popular flavors, but you can only put so many variations of chocolate into frozen cream before you need to try something new. Here, five ways chefs are rethinking everyone’s favorite summer dessert in out-there and interesting ways.
1. Fennel Sorbet – Pasadena, CA
Chef Bruce Kalman of Union Restaurant spent some time trying to figure out what to do with all his leftover fennel stalks and finally came up with his fennel sorbet, which he serves along a shaved fennel salad with wild arugula, grapefruit and ricotta.
2. Burrata Soft Serve – New York City
Dominique Ansel just recently opened an ice cream window at his New York bakery and brought the world cheese ice cream. The man behind the Cronut serves up his soft serve with balsamic caramel and confited strawberry.
3. Celery Sorbet – New York City
Franklin Becker’s vegetarian-friendly Little Beet Table in New York’s Flatiron District has an ultra-refreshing celery sorbet with fresh berries for those health-conscious folks looking for a guilt-free dessert.
4. English Pea Ice Cream – Chicago
Fennel, celery and now pea ice cream from Chicago’s Longman & Eagle: Green vegetables are having a frozen moment. L&E’s Jeremy Brutzkus serves it alongside a brown butter profiterole with ricotta and Earl Grey custards, Earl Grey caramel and Earl Grey gelée.
5. Avocado Ice Cream – Los Angeles
Curtis Stone moved ice cream to the beginning of the meal at Maude. He is also aware that, presently, everyone’s favorite food is avocado. He serves his avocado ice cream with zucchini, coconut and sorrel as the first savory course on the menu.