Going out for ice cream is a special treat for most of the year, but during the summer it becomes a regular social activity. It’s hot outside and that sunburn from the other day is really smarting: You deserve a cone of cherry cheesecake/rocky road/lavender honey. Thankfully, there’s tons of places in the city to get yourself a cold treat, whether it’s ice cream, gelato, milkshakes, paletas or sorbet. Here are some of the Alibi’s favorite spots.
La Michoacana de Paquime
La Michoacana de Paquime (6500 Zuni Rd. SE) is legit. They have several dozen flavors of paletas to choose from, along with a few ice creams and a small menu of Mexican street food standards like elote, tostadas and mango con chile. The paletas are tasty, the service is super friendly and you can have lunch and some ice cream for under $7.
I love a good paleta after a hot day of hiking or swimming, and Pop Fizz (1701 Fourth Street SW, inside the National Hispanic Cultural Center) fits that bill so well. Their next-level gorgeous paletas come in fruit and cream flavors including pineapple habañero, pecan cajeta and matcha mint. Besides the bars they also serve up ice cream and sorbet, and you can treat yourself to a float or a milkshake (or even a boozy milkshake, like a vanilla ice cream with mint schnapps and chocolate syrup situation). All their house-made products are made with real sugar and real fruit.
Van Rixel Bros.
Van Rixel Bros. (315 Juan Tabo Blvd. NE, Ste. A) make all natural gelato and sorbet here in Albuquerque, and they make them in flavors like blueberry lavender and strawberry habañero, because they know what the people want. The little nondescript shop that houses Van Rixel Bros. and The Chocolate Cartel (yes, that’s right, double threat), so everyone can get a little—or a lot—of what they’re craving. Get that chocolate cherry chunk vanilla gelato and embrace the sugar rush that comes after.
Oh yes, the little craft taco shop just off Central (111 Carlisle Blvd. NE, to be exact) makes paletas and gelato as well. With flavors like horchata and green tea with black sesame, the gelatos are anything but basic. Do yourself a favor and finish off your taco lunch with some tasty gelato in a homemade cone. Get a churro ice cream sandwich if you really love yourself.
I Scream Ice Cream
I Scream (2000 Carlisle Blvd. NE) wound up in Buzzfeed’s list of the most popular ice cream shops in each state in 2016, and we can see why. Between the blast-from-the-past decor, the endless toys to play with, the friendly staff and the darn good ice cream, this place should be on everyone’s list. Go for the frozen treats, stay for the Ms. Pac-Man.
The Paleta Bar
Aguas frescas, paletas, elotes and more! The Paleta Bar (2325 San Pedro Dr. NE) does their take on “gourmet” paletas, meaning everything is made fresh that day from real fruit, the flavors are always changing and they’re always good. Get your paleta dipped in chocolate if you know what’s good for you.
Nitro Fog Creamery
Nitro Fog is that magical little stand at Green Jeans Farmery (3600 Cutler Ave. NE, Ste. 6) that makes ice cream fresh, right in front of you, while you wait. How do they do this? Flash-freezing the cream with liquid nitrogen. I can’t pretend I fully understand it, but man does it taste good. The end product is a ridiculously creamy, smooth ice cream that’s never the same twice. Try the Himalayan salted caramel ice cream and know that heaven is a place on earth, and it’s right here, in your mouth.
The gelatos that Frost (3417 Central Ave. NE) makes are so gorgeous it almost seems a shame to eat them. The key word being almost. This Arizona-based chain has a constantly rotating cast of flavors that includes, at the time of writing, fior di latte, saffron rose and bellini. Some pretty high brow stuff, and they’ve been praised all over the media for it: Afar named them one of the 44 Perfect Places for Chocolate Lovers, and they won “Best Ice Cream Shop” from Tucson Lifestyle in 2015. Time for you to swing by and see what all the fuss is about. They have another location in the ABQ Uptown shopping center, as well.
Egg & Ice
Do I know what an egg puffle is? No. But do I want to eat it? Yes, absolutely. The big, puffy, waffle cones that Egg & Ice (inside the Coronado Center, 6600 Menaul Blvd. NE) makes are at least half the draw of this trendy dessert spot. Order an “egg puffle” and you’ll get a scoop of ice cream inside one of these giant cones, along with a whole assortment of toppings including Pocky sticks, Oreos and rainbow sprinkles. Or get the snow ice, which comes in taro, green tea and milk flavors, among others. Also, everything comes served with a little shovel to eat with, which is, like, next level cute.