Ice Cream, Glorious Ice Cream

Vanilla ice cream

Ice cream is one of my favorite treats and I enjoy it often, usually in a dish or occasionally in a cone.

Just thinking about the homemade ice cream my Mom used to make when I was a kid, invites special memories. We had a hand crank model with a wooden barrel that was filled with water and rock salt; you cranked it around and around until a soft ice cream was made. When the dasher was removed from the barrel, THAT was the prize for whomever cranked the ice cream. Favorite vanilla ice cream recipe.

Ice Cream Cone

In Queens, NY, we waited for the sound of the Good Humor and Mister Softee ice cream trucks which trolled neighborhoods, usually around dinnertime and begged our parents for "just one treat" to be enjoyed after dinner. And the Carvel store which was a short car ride away, was a much anticipated trip. Standing in line alongside neighbors, we caught up on neighborhood news and waited our turn to order at the counter. Tough decision to order a soft serve cone, cup or malted.

Roadside ice cream stands are my usual go to spots when taking a drive. Soft serve is my favorite--usually a swirl of chocolate and vanilla in a wafer cone. But when waffle cones are available, I'll opt for one of those, and splurge with two scoops.

Ever wondered how and when the first ice cream cone came about? In researching this topic (no arm twisting needed to be done), I uncovered the first ice cream cone was produced in 1896 by Italo Marching, who emigrated from Italy in the late 1800s to New York City. He was granted a patent in December, 1903, as referenced from the International Dairy Foods Association.

Although Marchiony is credited with the invention of the cone, a similar creation was independently introduced at the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair by Ernest A. Hamwi, a Syrian concessionaire. Hamwi was selling a crisp, waffle-like pastry -- zalabis -- in a booth right next to an ice cream vendor. Because of ice cream's popularity, the vendor ran out of dishes. Hamwi saw an easy solution to the ice cream vendor's problem: he quickly rolled one of his wafer-like waffles in the shape of a cone, or cornucopia, and gave it to the ice cream vendor. The cone cooled in a few seconds, the vendor put some ice cream in it, the customers were happy and the cone was on its way to becoming the great American institution that it is today.

Many Ice Creams But One Cone to Rule Them All

Gelato is another delightful cool treat. Some of the most delicious can be found at Vero Pizza in Cleveland Heights. Not as rich as full fat ice cream, this gelato has a creamy texture and is offered in some of the most wonderful flavors. Their affogato which is gelato "drowned" in espresso is also delicious.

Vero Pizza Gelato

This is the affogato as served at The Pheasant on Cape Cod.

Check out my blog post of a year ago about ice cream. I'd love to hear about your favorite ice cream flavors or favorite spots to get ice cream.


Pat Bennett is the founder and President of Pat's Granola, a Cleveland based food and collaborative lifestyle brand. Pat's Granola is sold online at and is also available at select Northeast Ohio businesses including:

Troubadour Coffee Roasters

Sports and Spine Physical Therapy

Locle Box

Made Cleveland

Nature's Oasis Lakewood

Happy Cows Group Share Happy Cows Group Share 

Sweet Bean Candies Sweet Bean Candies

The Bake Shop and Cafe The Roaming Biscuit

Marketwagon NEO MarketWagon

The Corner The Corner at The Van Aken District 

NEW! Farmers Feast at BottleHouse Brewery & Meadery

NEW Heritage Coffee, Solon


Pat's October 29 appearance on New Day Cleveland

Learn Pats story:

Food Founders Podcast 

Launching a Granola Business at Age 61

Women's History Month Series curated by Made Cleveland


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