The celebrations of Walt Whitman‘s 200th birthday are not over yet. The latest nod to the bard is a new ice cream flavor offered exclusively at the Brooklyn Fire Boat House location of Ample Hills Creamery. The ice cream shop chain, which takes its name straight from Whitman’s poem Crossing the Brooklyn Ferry, “I too lived, Brooklyn of ample hills was mine,” partnered with the New York Public Library to research desserts that Whitman enjoyed and came up with the flavor I Contain Breakfast Foods.
The flavor’s name is a play on a line from Whitman’s poem Song of Myself, “I contain multitudes.” The ingredients of the ice cream are based on the creamery and library’s findings that Whitman enjoyed coffee cake and doughnuts. The base is a sweet cream ice cream with a hint of cinnamon. Mixed-in there are house-made coffee cake pieces and crumbled chocolate doughnuts from Underwest Donuts. We had a few scoops while admiring the views of the Brooklyn Bridge right outside the shop and the new flavor was delicious!
Specialty flavors are offered at every Ample Hills location and are inspired by the shop’s surrounding neighborhoods. The Ample Hills Creamery in Brooklyn Bridge Park, is located inside the former fireboat station at Fulton Ferry Landing , a spot previously occupied by the historic Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory, and where Whitman would set off on the Fulton Ferry to cross the East River. Just outside this spot, the fence along the waterfront contains lines from Whitman’s poem, Crossing Fulton Ferry.
The Fire Boat House shop is is the newest of Ample Hills’ fifteen nationwide locations, thirteen of which are in New York City. Each shop has its own unique decor and offers twelve to twenty four flavors including specialty scoops and some permanent flavors like Ooey Gooey Butter Cake, Chocolate Milk & Cookies, and Peppermint Pattie.
Still can’t get enough Walt Whitman? There is a special exhibit opening at BlackBook Presents which features work by New York artist John Ransom Phillips which blends his metaphorical painting style with a selection of Whitman’s most provacative quotes. The exhibit, Robust American Love, honors Whitman’s 200th birthday anniversary and will be on view until September 5th. A portion of the exhibition’s proceeds from the sale of the works will benefit The Walt Whitman Initiative’s efforts to landmark Whitman’s last remaining home at 99 Ryerson St. in Brooklyn’s Clinton Hill neighborhood. The home on Ryerson St. is where the poet completed the first edition of his seminal work Leaves of Grass, yet it is currently at risk of demolition.
Next, check out 7 Places to Honor Walt Whitman in Brooklyn on his 200th Birthday