Ten houses competed in Game of Cones to rule NYC’s land of ice cream. Source: Foursquare.
House Big Gay (the Big Gay Ice Cream Shop, who we recently interviewed) was triumphant in the Iron Cone in Foursquare’s Game of Cones contest, a creative spin off HBO’s popular series Game of Thrones that pitted ten ice cream shops throughout NYC against each other. Between June 7 and June 21, visitors checked in at their favorite ice cream shops in NYC with the hashtag #GameOfCones.
At the conclusion of the tournament, Big Gay Ice Cream Shop had 2,040 check-ins, beating out second-place House Milk Bar (Momofuku Milk Bar, 1,483 check-ins) and Brooklyn’s House Ample Hills (Ample Hills Creamery, 1,313 check-ins). But in a city where Mister Softee trucks can be found on every corner, what about the scoops beyond Foursquare’s chosen ten? Check out ten other ice cream places worthy of the Iron Cone.
Alchemy Creamery – It may not be a brick and mortar shop, but this Brooklyn-based creamery is quickly expanding into retail stores in Manhattan as well. Alchemy has transformed the classic push-pop with its “magic wand,” a push-pop layered with cake, ice cream and toppings. (Smorgasburg & various retail locations)
Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain – Called “The Farm” by locals, this old-school soda fountain transports you back to the 1950s with its egg creams and sundaes. It also serves diner favorites for the complete American food experience. (513 Henry St., Brooklyn)
Cones – Cones offers a mix of everyday and eccentric flavors, from chocolate to corn gelato (studded with real kernels and dusted with cinnamon). (272 Bleecker St.)
Coolhaus – You don’t have to be an architect to appreciate the ice cream truck’s unique flavors, but it’ll help you get the puns on the menu (starting with the truck’s name). Coolhaus pairs cookies and ice cream for towering sandwich creations worthy of their architectural namesakes. (NY locations announced on Twitter)
Eddie’s Sweet Shop – “Classic American ice cream parlor” describes this Forest Hills institution perfectly. Eddie’s serves scoops, sundaes, shakes and traditional egg creams from behind a marble counter. You don’t have to go far for toppings either, as the shop also includes a candy counter. (105-29 Metropolitan Ave, Queens)
Eddie’s brings an old-school vibe to Queens.
Goat Town Ice Cream Cart – In the summer, this East Village restaurant draws passersby with its sidewalk ice cream cart. To keep the mix-ins from retaining their texture, they’re added on the spot. Favorites include salted caramel pretzel and the boozy Bulleit Breakfast–banana ice cream, cereal, granola, nuts, raisins and Bulleit bourbon. (511 East 5th St.)
Je & Jo – Cookie dough ice cream is always a classic, but this Hell’s Kitchen shop gives it a new spin. Quirky pairings include cardamom ice cream with Snickerdoodle, mint with lemon lavender shortbread, and honey grapefruit with pecan sandie dough. Plus, the ice cream comes in paper cups with pull-tab lids and wooden spoons, a throwback to elementary school lunchtime. (515 West 47th St.)
Ronnybrook Milk Bar – Sometimes the basics are the best, and that’s certainly the case at Chelsea Market’s Ronnybrook. Made with milk from Ronnybrook Dairy, the scoops here are intensely rich and creamy. (75 9th Ave)
Sky Ice – Traditionally, there isn’t much dairy in Asian cooking. Sky Ice breaks that stereotype with its Thai-inspired flavors that include thai tea, jasmine brown rice sorbet and black sesame seaweed. (63 5th Ave)
Stellina – This Lower East side shop offers a funky American take on creamy Italian gelato, with flavors like Bananimal — banana with animal crackers — and Mallomar. (95 Allen St.)
The other seven “houses” of ice cream that fought in Game of Cones were Chinatown Ice Cream Factory, Blue Marble Ice Cream, Van Leeuwen Ice Cream, Sundaes & Cones, Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory and Victory Garden.
On Thursday, June 27 from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., Foursquare will celebrate the conclusion of the game at South Street Seaport’s Pier 17. Steve’s Ice Cream will be on site handing out free scoops, and the first 100 people to check in via Foursquare will receive another free scoop courtesy of Iron Cone winner Big Gay Ice Cream.
Got another addition for the list? Share your favorite scoop with us below! Get in touch with the author @catku.