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We All Scream for Portland's Ice Cream!

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Updated January 11, 2013

Portland does so much well -- most notably, food, in lots of forms. So how is it that until recently two staples have been severely lacking: pizza and ice cream. Well, that's changing -- on both fronts.

In just five years, Portland has gone from a poor ice cream town to one that offers at least a dozen really good small-batch, gourmet shops that use local ingredients and create fantastic products. The shop titles that have hyperlinks each have full reviews, and we'll work to review as many of the others as we can as well (tough job!).

So celebrate Portland's booming ice cream scene. Have an opinion to share or think we missed an important one? Drop a line in the "Write a Review" section below.

  • Salt & Straw
    Salt & Straw has quickly built a devout following, first as a food cart, then one, then two sweet shops-- as evidenced by the crowds, even mid-winter. Go there, sample away, indulge, go home, repeat.
    Where:
    2035 NE Alberta Street (Northeast Scoop Shop) & 838 NW 23rd Avenue (Northwest Scoop Shop and Bakery)
    Hours: NE Alberta Scoop Shop open 11 a.m.-7 p.m. daily; NW 23rd Scoop Shop and Bakery open 7 a.m.-11 p.m. daily
    More Info:
    Full Portland About.com Review; saltandstraw.com;
    Phone: 503-208-3867 (NE Alberta Street); 971-271-8168 (NW 23rd Avenue)

  • Ruby Jewel
    Fresh baked ice cream sandwiches made with home-baked cookies and sold at farmers' markets initially got Ruby Jewel on the map, and in 2010 that buzz led to the first Ruby Jewel all natural ice cream shop on Mississippi Ave. Another in the West End now joins it in serving artisanal, small-batch ice cream well worth checking out.
    Where:
    3713 North Mississippi Avenue in North Portland and 428 SW 12th Avenue in the West End
    Hours: Sunday - Thursday, Noon-10 p.m.; Friday & Saturday, Noon-11 p.m.
    More Info:
    Full Portland About.com Review; rubyjewel.net
    Phone: 503-505-9314 (NoPo Scoops) and 971-271-8895 (West End Scoops)

  • Staccato Gelato
    Bright colors adorn the walls as well as the interior of the gelato case at Staccato. The chocolate flavors are dark and intense, the fruit options excellent, and there are both traditional options (tiramisu, pistachio and hazelnut) as well as adventurous (Guinness, mojito and black sesame).
    Where:
    1540 SE Bybee (near East Burnside) & 232 NE 28th (Northeast)
    Hours: Monday - Thursday, noon-10 p.m.; Friday - Saturday, 8 a.m.-11 p.m.; Sunday, 8 a.m.-10 p.m.
    More Info:
    Full Portland About.com Review; staccatogelato.com
    Phone: 503-231-7100 (NE 28th) and 503-517-8957 (SE Bybee)

  • Lovely's Fifty-Fifty
    Awesome pizza and ice cream together under one roof? Both food staples were quite lacking in Portland until recent years, and Lovely's nails both. The ice cream is organic, and Portlanders have been raving about it since Lovely's opened in 2010.
    Where:
    4039 N Mississippi Suite 101
    Hours:
    Tuesday - Sunday 5 p.m.-10 p.m.
    More Info:
    lovelysfiftyfifty.com; 503-281-4060

  • Fifty Licks
    The Fifty Licks food cart is small, of course, so there are typically only a handful of flavors in rotation, but you can count on delicious creamy ice creams such as Stumptown coffee and maple bacon -- yup, it's Portland! -- and sorbets such as coconut lemon saffron.
    Where:
    Good Food Here Pod, 4262 Southeast Belmont Street
    Hours:
    Wednesday - Saturday, 1 p.m.-9 p.m.; Sunday, 1 p.m.-8 p.m.
    More Info:
    fifty-licks.com
    Phone: 954-294-8868

  • Oui Presse
    Ice cream is a recent addition for Oui Presse, which also serves pastries and espresso drinks and sells a variety of magazines in the Hawthorne neighborhood. There are only a few flavors available, and you could visit the shop and not even realize there's ice cream there. And what a tragedy that would be -- it's fabulous!
    Where:
    1740 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
    Hours:
    Monday - Saturday, 7 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sunday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
    More Info:
    oui-presse.com; 503-384-2160

  • Cool Moon Ice Cream
    The Pearl District needs good ice cream -- and that's covered, thanks to Cool Moon. Homemade ice cream with natural local ingredients keep customers coming back -- and the $4 pint Happy Hour pint (4 p.m.-6 p.m. daily) doesn't hurt either. Check Cool Moon's Facebook page for current flavors.
    Where:
    1105 NW Johnson Street
    Hours:
    Sunday - Thursday, Noon-10 p.m.; Friday - Saturday. Noon-11p.m.
    More Info:
    coolmoonicecream.com; 503-224-2021

  • Alotto Gelato
    Alotto Gelateria brings Old World tradition to the Northwest. Flavors incorporate local ingredients, and in true gelato style, Alotto's offerings are denser, with less air whipped in than regular ice cream, and they have significantly less butterfat.
    Where:
    931 NW 23rd Avenue
    Hours:
    Sunday - Thursday, Noon-10:00 p.m.; Friday & Saturday, Noon-11:00 p.m.
    More Info:
    alottogelato.biz;
    Phone: 503-228-1709

  • Scoop Food Cart
    Some of Portland's best, most inventive foods come from carts -- so why not ice cream? Scoop has been serving up delicious ice cream for over two years now and have contributed to the burgeoning Portland artisan ice cream scene. Subscriptions are available for Scoop's cool Community-Supported Ice Cream delivery program -- think CSA, but sweeter! A whopping 23 varied standard flavors are regularly available, with other seasonals rotating through.
    Where:
    North Station Food Cart Pod Inside Handsome Pizza, 2730 North Killingsworth Street & a la carts Food Pavilion, 4926 SE Division Street
    Hours: North Station:
    Tuesday - Saturday, Noon-8 p.m.; a la carts: Tuesday - Wednesday, 5 p.m.-8 p.m.; Thursday - Saturday, Noon-8 p.m.; Sunday, 1 p.m.-8 p.m. Also, check the website to find Scoops at various farmers' markets and events.
    More Info:
    scooppdx.com

  • What's the Scoop?
    All natural ice cream and a small batch manufacturing process that uses liquid nitrogen to freeze the ice cream more quickly and -- according to the company's website -- resulting in more creaminess is the scoop at What's the Scoop. Suffice to say, the results are fantastic and worth checking out. Flavors change daily, so check the business' Facebook page.
    Where:
    3540 North Williams Avenue
    Hours:
    Sunday - Thursday, Noon-10:00 p.m.; Friday & Saturday, Noon-11:00 p.m.
    More Info:
    whatsthescooppdx.com
    Phone: 971-266-1787
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