TQFTMDMCCIC: In Space! [and a GIVEAWAY!]

Okay, so this won’t be nearly as exciting as Muppets In Space, or as intense as watching Gravity in IMAX, or anything like that…But it’s still pretty dang interesting. I have eaten astronaut food, without even leaving the atmosphere. Or … Continue reading

TQFTMDMCCIC: Ding Ding Ding, We Have A Winner!

One of my best friends came to visit about a month ago, and on a trip into San Francisco we were set on hitting up the Ben&Jerry’s store along the waterfront. Until we came across this signage:

Norman's | Thin Mint

 

I took the bait, and boy am I glad I did! I’ve found a five-star flavor!Norman's | Thin Mint

THE SCOOP: Thin Mint by Mitchell’s Ice Cream. A  fresh, natural-tasting peppermint ice cream with dark chocolate shavings.

PROS: EVERYTHING. Light, fresh peppermint flavor that isn’t dyed green and doesn’t taste fake. With the most amazing texture. And high quality chocolate chips, that are the perfect texture to melt in your mouth!! Oh my. I thought I’d died and gone to heaven. Loved every last second of this cone.

CONS: I can’t purchase it just anywhere. The closest grocery store that carries it in the freezer section is Draeger’s in San Mateo! And if I ever move away from the Bay I’m straight outta luck.

OVERALL RATING: 5/5
And now my palate has been tainted, because I’ve finally tasted something that qualifies for five whole stars. My apologies for any further ice cream reviews – I promise I’ll try not to let my judgment be altered but I figured it’s only fair to let you know that it might be 😉

Since this was such a special find, I have a couple bonus categories/photos to share with you!

 

Norman's | Thin Mint

THE FELLOW TASTE TESTERS: This was the first time my darling daughter actually enjoyed ice cream! Before she’s just made nasty faces because it’s cold. Or maybe because it just wasn’t as delicious as this stuff. My BFF Maye was also here and taste-tested too!! But for some reason the only photographic evidence I have of our trip into the city together is the fact that you can see her shoes in the photo I took of the ice cream cone.

Norman's | Thin Mint

THE SHOP: Norman’s Ice Cream and Freezes. It’s adorable! Hidden in a little corner of a courtyard (in the Cannery), with that fantastic signage. I’m pretty sure the owner, Norman, is the one who served us, and he is a gem. “It’s a lovely day, huh? But not as lovely as you ladies or my beautiful wife!” Totally tipped him. You *can* purchase Mitchell’s ice cream at other locations, but I love this little place so much.

All in all, I’d say this day was one of the best days ever. It was enough to get both the “Best Day Ever” and “Everything Is Awesome” songs (a la Spongebob and The Lego Movie) both running through my head, because I am so mature and grown up when it comes to my mental my-life-is-awesome soundtrack.

love, rach
disclosure, again: ain’t nobody paying me to write this bidness.

[previous ice cream reviews can be viewed here!]

TQFTMDMCCIC the 5th

OKAY, OKAY, I KNOW.
I have been seriously slacking in my ice cream critiques. Not in person – I definitely have been glutting myself on creamy ice-y minty goodness. But the actually sharing my findings here on this good ‘ol blog?? Well. The crickets speak for themselves.

So, onwards and upwards! I have some exciting reviews coming your way – including a little giveaway [my first one, ahh!] and an actual 5/5 star amazing I-could-eat-this-every-day find that I came across yesterday!!! I am stoked.

But first up, this intriguing find from my grocer’s freezer. Technically, it IS a gelato and NOT an ice cream. What’s the difference??? I have no idea except that I think it has something to do with the temperature it is frozen to (gelato is frozen colder..?) and that temperature has an effect on the overall texture. But I have yet to actually do any real research on the matter and I’m basing that conjecture solely on the types of ice cream makers I used to memorize spiels about while working kitchen retail. BUT that is neither here nor there – I give you gelato!

Talenti Gelato | Mediterranean Mint

TALENTI GELATO | MEDITERRANEAN MINT

THE DISH: A light green, mint flavored ice cream (uh, gelato) with flat, non-uniform rectangular chunks of semisweet chocolate.

Talenti Gelato | Mediterranean Mint

THE PROS: Very smooth! The texture is wonderful. The ice cream gelato portion is very high quality. An interesting mint flavor too – not like anything I’ve ever had before. It really grew on me, though! Reminds me more of the flavor of peppermint tea than the traditional “mint” flavor in your run of the mill MCCIC. Also, check out those ingredients! I love seeing something so simple.

Talenti Gelato | Mediterranean Mint

 

THE CONS: While the gelato base is unconventional but lovable and of an exceedingly high quality, the chocolate is disappointingly sub-par. With a dessert such as this, I expect quality in every ingredient. It cost me somewhere in the neighborhood of $5.00 for one pint, which is not the most expensive frozen dessert I’ve ever purchased, but it’s certainly more than a pint of Ben&Jerry’s and every B&J’s flavor I’ve had the pleasure of enjoying has had better chocolate than this. You’d think they’d be able to source a better ingredient, it would make their product truly sing!

OVERALL RATING: 2/5
Once again, I am overly critical, especially after sampling SO many types of the same flavor combination. But the price point coupled with the disappointing chocolate left me extremely unimpressed. I would, however, be willing to sample more Talenti flavors….provided they did not have any chocolate mix-ins 😉

Stay tuned for weekly ice cream installments! Giveaways and five stars and consistency, oh my! And once again, ain’t nobody paid me to write this bidniz. I am a simple person who has a passion for mint chocolate chip ice cream, makes a point to buy all of the kinds I deem worth my time (with my own monies), and thereby ingests copious amounts of minty chocolate-y frozen treats. Sometimes I even share them with my family or friends.

TQFTMDMCCIC: IV

This week I’ve got yet another Ben&Jerry’s flavor for you!

Ben&Jerry's Mint Chocolate Cookie

Ben&Jerry’s Mint Chocolate Cookie

THE DISH: A white mint ice cream with crumbled chocolate sandwich cookie bits. Think cookies n’ cream, but with a mint ice cream base.

Ben&Jerry's Mint Chocolate Cookie 2

See that right there?! Almost a full cookie. So beautiful.

THE PROS: Substantial cookie chunks! I don’t know about you, but I consider it a very good omen when I’m able to root out an entire cookie still in tact from my carton of ice cream. It is the ultimate archaeological dig. And I found two in this little pint! I love that, and the fact that the cookies stay soft and give you more of an immediate chocolate flavor, unlike chips which need time to melt on the tongue. It’s a nice subtle minty flavor, almost like mint Oreos blended with vanilla ice cream (instead of the other way around). It’s quite pleasant overall.

THE CONS: I wish it was “mintier”, if you eat the entire pint in one sitting (oops) you kind of grow numb to the mint and can’t taste it by the end.

OVERALL RATING: 3/5. The subtle mint just doesn’t do it for me. Again, very good ice cream, nothing “annoying” about eating it, but simply not worth it for the price point. I’m happy someone finally made a mint cookies n cream, because it is a BRILLIANT idea, but I’m not going to buy it unless it’s on sale. Come on off-brands, let’s see some knock offs!

Stayed tuned next week for HAAGEN DAZS!!!

love — Rach

previous reviews [1] [2] [3]

TQFTMDMCCIC the Third

I know, I KNOW. you’ve been waiting with bated breath for this series to continue. You’re welcome!! 😉 Regular updates to follow, keep your eyes peeled on Saturdays y’all!

The Quest For The Most Delicious Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream continues with…

IMG_7187

Ben&Jerry’s Mint Chocolate Crunch!

THE DISH: a rich chocolaty ice cream with fudge and mint ribbon swirls, and spherical, chocolate covered, chocolate mint wafer cookies throughout.

this is definitely not its' best angle...but this is what you get when you forget to take a picture until you're down to the very bottom of the carton. My bad!

this is definitely not its’ best angle…but this is what you get when you forget to take a picture until you’re down to the very bottom of the carton. My bad!

THE PROS: Very, VERY nice creamy texture! Love the mint swirl with the chocolate ice cream, perfect type of mint with the right amount of “zing”. The first few bites off the top of the carton were heavenly.

THE CONS: I didn’t care for the cookies – they were an odd shape and required a lot of chewing (and you know how I feel about having to chew my ice cream). Also their mint flavor was a bit “off” – it didn’t match the mint ribbon. The cookies were more like an Andes mint flavor, while the ribbon was closer to a peppermint patty? I could do without the fudge ribbon too, it was fairly runny and not really a very good fudge. I found myself hunting for bites of ice cream+peppermint swirl only, haha.

OVERALL RATING: 2/5.
Yes, the ice cream with the mint ribbon alone was AMAZING. But the price tag and the weird cookies and the un-satisfying fudge ribbon really take it down a couple notches. I can’t see myself buying this again, unless it was on sale and all of the other chocolate mint flavors were sold out. Bummer, I was really hoping to love this one.

Have you tried this flavor? Any other chocolate/mint combos you think I should check out?? Let me know!

Part i // Part ii

Love — Rach

TQFTMDMCCIC: The Sequel

Okay, I’ll be the first to admit that I’m slacking off here! I definitely have three different flavors I’ve been meaning to share with you. I’ll start off with one that I really, truly loved:

Breyers Blasts! Girl Scout Thin Mints

 

IMG_7231

 

IMG_7232

IMG_7234

THE DISH: A non-green mint, with flakes of chocolate and crushed Thin Mints cookies in irregular shapes and sizes (sometimes you get lucky and find a whole one!) – it’s like cookies&cream, but with Thin Mints instead of “chocolate sandwich cookies”.

PROS: PRETTY MUCH EVERYTHING. Seriously. This was awesome. Lovely minty flavor – I couldn’t tell if it was the cookies or the ice cream but either way, it was a nice dispersion. The chips were the perfect size/thickness. The texture of the cookies was awesome – like they had been dunked in a glass of milk for the perfect amount of time. Nice overall mouth feel!

CONS: I honestly couldn’t think of any while eating it. And I can’t come up with any now.

OVERALL RATING: 4 out of 5 stars – I can’t justify a 5 star rating in this context because it is not technically a “mint chocolate chip” ice cream. But I would totes give it 5 stars just for existing, outside of the TQFTMDMCCIC context!!! Yummm. I hope this sticks around.

Anyone else found this flavor and given it a try? Do you prefer just chips or cookies in your mint ice cream??

Love, Rach

The Quest For The Most Delicious Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream: Part I

You guys, my love for mint chocolate chip ice cream knows no bounds.

Relishing some MCC at Disneyland. Can you feel the love?!

Relishing some MCC at Disneyland, Summer 2011. Can you feel the love?! [I was probably also textin’ my boyfrand-who-turned-husband and was a little twitterpated, so there’s love radiating from that too, but still. The ice cream.]

There is something about the combination of minty freshness and decadent chocolatey-ness that really makes my heart sing. I’m no respecter of brands – nearly anything chocolatey and minty [green coloring not required] gets my heartstrings hummin’ along – but I definitely have my preferences.

Hence, I embarked on The Quest For The Most Delicious Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream…which shall hereby be known as TQFTMDMCCIC.
It’s pronounced “t’qwuf t’mmm-duh-mmm-kick”it’s got a little bit of a rhythm to it and sounds like beatboxing. Sort of. Almost. You may do a little dance whilst saying it if you wish.
I know I did.

But what good is TQFTMDMCCIC if I don’t share the deliciousness in photographic form and opine on each and every iced cream I try along the way?!

FIRST UP: Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream in “mmmm Mint Chocolate Chip”

TQFTMDMCCIC_1 TQFTMDMCCIC_2

THE DISH: A creamy smooth, green mint ice cream with a nice zingy flavor. Packed with semi-sweet chocolate chunks of varying rectangular size.

PROS: I do like the mint flavor on it’s own! It’s not timid. Very refreshing. The chocolate chunks take a little longer to melt, so each bite has a smooth chocolatey finish that’s kind of nice. Also, the chunks vary greatly in size, which makes for a fun eating experience!

CONS: Personally, I don’t like ice cream that I have to “chew”, if that makes sense. And these chocolate chunks require quite a bit of jaw action. Also, the chip-to-cream ratio seems okay at first, but occasionally I end up with a mouthful of chips alone, which is also not my fave but if that’s what you’re into you’d dig it. The mint by itself is punchy, but still is overtaken by the chocolate chunks, and I don’t love the chocolate by itself enough to really love that.

OVERALL RATING: 3 out of 5 stars. It ain’t bad, it’s good quality, and I do enjoy it…it just ain’t worth my money unless it’s on sale (which it was at the time this was purchased). I typically enjoy the off-brand/store brand mint chip just a smidge more!

I hope you’re all excited to join me in TQFTMDMCCIC! What’s your personal favorite flavor of ice cream? Any other mint chip lovers out there with recommendations for me??

love, rach

PS, mad props to my seester Sarah, who documents nearly all of the moments in my life that are worth documenting [AKA that ice cream cone at Dinneyland]. She has some sweet skillz.

PPS, in the interest of full disclosure, I ain’t sponsored by nobody and don’t have aspirations to be. This blog is just for fun, nobody is paying me to do it, and the thoughts/opinions/words are all my own. I initially purchased this ice cream to go along with my birthday cake last month (more on that later).

TILLAMOOK

My husband is a complete turophile.

So, naturally, when we traveled up to Northern Oregon for Thanksgiving…a trip to the Tillamook cheese factory was in order.

I’ve been here a number of times throughout my life, and it’s always a delightful experience! The self-guided tour is awesome, it’s fun to watch the cheese being made and processed, they give you free cheese samples, and the gift shop is chock-full of every kind of Tillamook cheese ever made (including “squeaky cheese”!) and lots of entertaining cheese-themed silliness. But the best part???? THE ICE CREAM COUNTER. It’s the only place in the world where you will find every single flavor of Tillamook creamery ice cream under the same roof (did you know they make sorbet?!), available for you to devour in freshly-made waffle cones!!! oh. so. good.

Needless to say, I’m a little bit in love with the place. Pretty sure the hubs’ fell in love too.

Here are a couple random photos I remembered to take:

Brother the [blur of a] cow + cousin the farmer

Hubs the cow + Tiptoeing cousin the farmer

Sister the cow + Myself as the crankypants farmer

Crazy kids waiting for lunch! Which is delicious, btw. I LOVED the Centennial Grilled Cheese.

Favorite piece of cheese paraphernalia found on the tour

We grabbed a block of smoked cheddar and vintage extra-sharp cheddar to enjoy at home. SO GOOD. Highly recommended!

And my tiny little cookbook addiction problem led me to purchase the Tillamook Cheese Cookbook as well…but I mean, who wouldn’t want a cookbook where every single recipe is doused in cheesy goodness?! Plus, they have an entire chapter dedicated to Macaroni and Cheese. I think that speaks for itself right there.

Basically, if you’re ever in Oregon, go to Tillamook. If you fancy a beautiful drive, take the scenic route along highway 101 – coming up through Newport and Lincoln City is my absolute favorite 🙂

 

 

And if you’ve never been to Oregon….get there. You’re missing out.

love, Rach