Hey parents, want to treat your kids for a good report card? Hey kids, want to treat your Dads for Father’s Day without breaking your piggy bank? Hop on your bikes and take them out for ice cream. You’ll find an ice cream, gelato or frozen yogurt shop in almost every neighborhood. And if you want to work up a bigger appetite, try biking to a shop on the other side of town.
With so many choices all over town, I’ve created a new map that adds ice cream shops to the Secret Passages map from last week (see link at the end). Here are a few that are fun for a bike outing on a warm day:
48 Flavors at Rick’s Ice Cream
For a good old fashioned, locally made ice cream shop, Rick’s Ice Cream has a surprising number of flavors with exotic ingredients: ginger, lavender, saffron and sea salt, to name a few. But don’t worry, kids, Rick’s also has kid-friendly exotics like Cotton Candy and Birthday Cake and traditional favorites like Rocky Road. Rick’s has ample shaded outdoor seating: two benches out front and large picnic tables for bigger groups.
To get there, cross San Antonio at the old Mayfield Mall and use the secret passage from Nelson Drive. Bike parking is available nearby on a large, school-style rack.
Frozen Yogurt vs Gelato: Faceoff on Castro Street
He says yogurt, she says gelato. To please everyone, head downtown where you’ll find Gelato Classico and Yoogl Frozen Yogurt Cafe right across from each other on Castro Street. There’s outdoor seating on cafe tables on the Gelato Classico side and planter bench seating on the Yoogl side. So everyone can get what he or she wants without having to ride all over town, and everyone can eat it together outside.
Bike parking is available along Castro Street, but these days it tends to fill quickly.
Sweeter with Candy at the Sweet Shop
What was once a small market on a country lane in Los Altos is now a destination no one with a sweet tooth should miss. For candy lovers, there’s a wall of delights of every variety, from jaw breakers to malt balls to sour gummy candies. For those seeking frozen treats, there are three flavors of yogurt with a wide assortment of toppings. The Sweet Shop is one of few stores outside of tourist locations that sells Dipping Dots.
From the south side of town, you can take Marich, Portola and Loucks Streets. From the northeast, you can take Monroe, Del Medio, Showers or Escuela, but you have make a jog after crossing El Camino that may have you walking on the sidewalk for a bit. Bike racks and a lovely shaded patio with tables are available.
Baskin-Robbins All Around Town
For over 60 years, nothing has defined American ice cream quite like Baskin-Robbins and their 31 flavors, one for each day of the month. Now available in 49 countries, it’s not surprising that there are three Baskin-Robbins locations within three miles of downtown: one on El Camino near the Sunnyvale border that’s easy to access from the Stevens Creek Trail, one on El Camino near Shoreline that’s convenient to McElvey ball field, and one in downtown Los Altos. This month’s Flavor of the Month is Triple Vanilla, which swirls three variations of America’s #1 ice cream flavor, which also happens to be Dick’s favorite.
See the map for details on bike parking and outdoor seating at each location.
Ice cream, gelato, frozen yogurt: which way do you lean in the frozen treat standoff? Which shop is worth riding a few extra miles for the pleasure of summer’s favorite dessert?