This summer, I have been eating JP Licks like it is going out of business. Ice cream in general, really, but mostly JP Licks. I read somewhere that Massachusetts consumes the most ice cream per capita. As a MA resident, I have apparently accepted it as my personal duty to make sure our per capita consumption goes nowhere but up.
You know the book If You Give a Mouse a Cookie? It reminds me of myself. I’m never satisfied with just one. If I’m getting a cup of ice cream (not a sundae, no toppings) I wouldn’t dream of getting only one flavor. I always need to have two. I love dreaming up flavor combinations. Apparently, the JP Licks staff are into this practice too, as they have come to my assistance numerous times lately in selecting two flavors that go together.
This first one is a creation of my own that my friend Leah and I got yesterday. It was actually our second of the day, but this first. Peach and maple buttah walnut. I have enjoyed the peach before and Leah was very interested in it, so we established that as flavor 1. When thinking about what to pair it with, there is the fruit route, pairing it with a flavor like black raspberry. I wanted something more complex though. I ruled out anything coffee, chocolate, or mint. And then I came across maple buttah walnut. Ah! It would be like, a maple walnut peach crisp! Or, a peach pie with a maple walnut crumb topping. Or, a maple walnut shortbread thumbprint cookie filled with peach preserves. As you can see, I like finding non-ice-cream dessert equivalents. The two flavors did go beautifully together, though if I had the option to specify, it would be ideal with two thirds peach and one third maple walnut. The latter was richer and more intense than the former, and with equal proportions, the maple threatens to overpower the peach.
I’m working backwards in time. Leah and I didn’t share just one. If you know us, you’d know how silly an idea that is. Previous to awesome combination #2, we shared a cup of oatmeal cookie hard yogurt and peanut butter Oreo. Peanut butter oreo was my choice, as I’d had it earlier in the week and absolutely loved it. Peanut butter oreo is not an easy flavor to pair with something else. The peanut butter and chocolate is an intense combination in itself. Leah immediately suggested the oatmeal cookie hard yogurt. After asking for a taste, I was on board.
If you were to give me this flavor without telling me its name, I probably would have just said cinnamon. There are no chunks of cookie in the hard yogurt, though the texture suggests some ground up cookie blended in. It tastes most like a sweet cinnamon. Once again, a perfect pairing. If you’ve never tried cinnamon and peanut butter (as in the real things, not ice cream flavor), you might be pleasantly surprised. The spice complements the creamy, fatty peanut butter well. The lighter consistency of the hard yogurt was also a welcome contrast to the rich, heavy peanut butter Oreo.
I mentioned that I had tried peanut butter Oreo earlier in the week, as in, it may or may not have comprised my dinner on Friday. I forgot to mention, peanut butter Oreo is a seasonal flavor for August. I was sad to see July’s cucumber ice cream and watermelon sherbet end their run, but not that sad considering what replaced them. I got this particular cup at the Davis Sq. location. I need to ask her name the next time I go, but there is one employee there who is excellent. When I told her I was going to get two flavors, she immediately suggested pistachio and chocolate, and gave me a taste of the two together. It was a fantastic combination, but I was in the market for some peanut butter Oreo. Wanting something chocolatey but not too much so, I opted for chocolate chip.
The vanilla base of the chocolate chip ice cream was a nice mellow foil to the more intense peanut butter flavor, and the chocolate chips added nice texture.
And now, going against my need for multiple textures and crazy combinations, I present to you, plain chocolate. Just chocolate. This one actually belonged to Ryder, who is distinctly anti-crazy flavors and anti-bells and whistles in his ice cream. He likes plain chocolate and nothing else. I took advantage of this opportunity since I would never order this on my own. It was very nice. If I were given a cup of this, I would not complain. It had a solid chocolate flavor, not too intense, and lightly sweet.
And as everyone knows, to really judge the merits of an ice cream producer, you need to see how they do with the standards. Based on this standard, and several other non-standards, I give JP Licks a 4 out of 5 stars.
4A College Ave.