Everyone knows that National Ice Cream Sandwich Day (like National Hot Dog Day and National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day) is a totally bullshit excuse to ingest a lot of empty calories. But you know what? As a red-blooded American, I am not one to look a caloric gift horse in the mouth, and as such, I hope you will join me tomorrow in celebrating ice cream sandwiches of all shapes and sizes THIS SATURDAY AUGUST 2ND.
First, though, I think it’s pretty important that we examine the ice cream sandwich at its very most basic level, aka the kind that costs thirty-five cents from the deli below my apartment, aka what I like to refer to as a BODEGAWICH. Officially called the “Big Boy”, this is actually a pint-size version of the standard manufactured ice cream sandwich. A self-proclaimed “Deluxe Vanilla Ice Cream Sandwich”, it weighs in at 130 calories, and more than accounts for your daily dose of partially hydrogenated soybean oil; it’s obviously nothing to write home about, but it’s representative of what most people think of when they hear “ice cream sandwich”, AND it’s representative of what we will NOT be investigating this National Ice Cream Sandwich Day. (PS, what is with the wrapper mascot. It’s like if the Hamburglar had an ice cream baby.)
Also, just to give you a bit of insight into the world of the ice cream sandwich, I decided to consult the world’s smartest man on the matter. No, I don’t mean Alex Trebek, I mean WIKIPEDIA! This is a confection that exists all over the world, from New Zealand, where they go bananas for Vanilla Slices, to Scotland where they’re known as “sliders”, to right here in North America, where the depressing version pictured above was allegedly invented in 1945 by a man called Jerry Newberg, who at that time was hawking ice cream at Forbes Field. #PROUDTOBEANAMERICAN
And if you want to know exactly how these dudes are made, here is a very helpful and informative video via THE SCIENCE CHANNEL:
MOST BEAUTIFUL (ICE CREAM SANDWICHES) IN THE WORLD
Women Want to Be Them, Men Want to Be WITH THEM (or is it the other way around?)
a special ICE CREAM SANDWICH HIGH FASHION SHOOT
photographed by Jeff Martin
BEST LOCAL ICE CREAM SANDWICHES
Located on a quiet street in Georgetown, Baked & Wired has become popular for it’s monstrous cupcakes. But during the summer months, the bakery also serves up a variety of ice cream “sammies,” which include the chocolate-chip cookie and vanilla ice cream “Bakedwich” and the “Y-Not” – chocolate ice cream shoved between two peanut butter cookies.
These sizable frozen treats can sell out, especially on hot and humid D.C. afternoons. So get one while they last and enjoy a break by the nearby canal. -Travis Mitchell
Baker Greer Gilchrist makes some of the best cookies in Washington D.C. It’s a fact. She’s won awards. She won our cookie competition at last summer’s Cookies and Cream event. When she decided to put some ice cream between two of those cookies, it made a lot of sense.
Imagine these with ice cream in the middle
The ice cream sandwich is not an everyday item at Blind Dog. Get it when it’s available. If it’s not available, buy two of her amazing cookies, sandwich some store bought stuff between them and it’s still better than anything you’ll find in the freezer section. -Brandon Wetherbee
Any GW student has at least heard of Captain Cookie even if they haven’t made the stop between classes while the food truck is parked on H Street. But if you haven’t been, it’s IMPERATIVE that you check it out. Or don’t and keep the line short so I can have ALL THE COOKIES. You can track their food trucks here.They bake the cookies in the truck, so they are always warm and fresh and absolutely delicious. And while you can be satisfied with just cookies and a jug of milk (yes, they sell that, too) the real winner is the Chipwich – Captain Cookie’s version of an ice cream sandwich. Get two of the same cookie or mix and match and then watch as they scoop a big blob of fresh ice cream on one, gentle lay the top cookie on the already-melting scoop and hand you heaven in a little plastic box. This might be blasphemous to say, but these are best eaten with some utensils AND NOW I REALLY WANT ONE. – Emily Holland
Now that all that critical information is out of the way, let’s begin our nonconformist journey in Greenpoint, where Peter Pan Donuts (727 Manhattan Avenue) will hook you up with a DONUT ice cream sandwich, thus putting all other sandwich shells to shame FOREVER. Get there early for a maximum selection of donuts, which you can ask to have cut in half and filled with a scoop of ice cream of your choice. Personally I like the chocolate cake donut with dulce de leche ice cream, and/or the glazed old fashioned donut with vanilla, though some people swear by the red velvet donut with cookies and cream. Basically they are all good, but do note that they are pretty unwieldy, and are best eaten right at the counter rather than on the move. The best part? All of that sugar and fat will only cost you $3.75. BOOM!
Not to be outdone in the kind-of-breakfast ice cream sandwich department, Wafels & Dinges (15 Avenue B) makes its own artery-clogging variety over in the East Village. (Granted, you COULD chase down the truck, but I prefer its permanent HQ on Avenue B and 2nd.) Called DE VERDEKKE (it feels like you should internet-shout that, no?), this one entails a scoop of ice cream of your choice sandwiched between two mini waffles, and it costs $6. MY choice was a scoop of the Speculoos ice cream (because I am a Biscoff addict, and it is a problem), which was insanely perfect between the two warm, sugary waffles. While clearly different to the Peter Pan ice cream sandwich, it’s still a treat that is best eaten quickly (warm waffles lead to fast melting) while sitting down, armed with LOTS of napkins.
And for those of you searching for the ultimate ice cream sandwich this summer, THE ORDEAL IS OVER. That’s because it’s ready and waiting for you at AB Biagi (our favorite NYC gelato shop OF ALL TIME at 235 Elizabeth Street), and it entails: 1. gelato, and 2. BRIOCHE (special-made by Bien Cuit), aka all of the basic food groups. Here is what it looks like:
(via AB Biagi)
When I visited to test out the sandwich, I went with the orange blossom brioche and pistachio gelato at the recommendation of the experts behind the counter, and HOLY EFF IT WAS GOOD! The process is simple; you choose your brioche flavor, they cut it in half, and then they fill it with a gelato flavor of your choosing. THEN the sandwich goes into a brioche press for a few seconds, which seals the outside and leaves you with warm bread surrounding a cold gelato center. (SO GOOD, RIGHT?! GET ONE.)
BEST POP CULTURE MOMENTS FOR ICE CREAM SANDWICHES
Have I neglected to mention your favorite out-of-the-box ice cream sandwich? I’m sorry, there was only so much taste-testing our waistlines could handle! Feel free to tell us all about it in the comments and/or on Twitter so that we may all exploit the hell out of National Ice Cream Sandwich Day.