Amy’s – goths throwing ice cream

27 11 2007

There are many ice cream franchises around, each with their own gimmick or advertising ploy to drag you in for over-priced ice cream. However, in my mind, there is a standout in the ice cream industry that regards quality so dearly that it refuses to franchise, and that is Amy’s Ice Creams.

Amy’s is an Austin staple that started back in 1984 by Amy Miller (yes, there is a face behind the name). Most of the stores are in Austin with a couple in Houston and one in San Antonio (thanks, Amy). There are two things you can expect when you go to Amy’s: excellent ice cream and an interesting (for lack of a better word) staff. Let’s start with the ice cream.

To qualify as a bona fide ice cream, a product needs to have at least 10% butterfat. Amy’s recipes have 14% butterfat – not the highest content around, but high enough for the flavor and texture to be quite a creamy treat, and better tasting than most of the ice cream on the market. In addition, the ice creams have very little overrun, or air mixed into the cream, producing a dense and heavy product. Amy’s offers seven standard flavors all the time – the typical vanillas and chocolates. There are several seasonal flavors based on certain holidays, and over 300 additional flavors they have concocted that get rotated onto the menus. Expect around 25-30 selections at any one time in addition to several cones, cups, and mix-ins.

But its not just the ice cream that attracts the patrons, its the staff. The “scoopers” and their antics will keep you coming back. They are performers, developing their own bag of tricks and individual style, and entertaining their customer not only with their effervescent personalities, but with harrowing ice cream throws (I’ve seen a ball of ice cream get stuck on a ledge before). The employees are the type of people no one else really wants to hire because of how they look on the outside (call it goth, or alternative, or whatever). Amy’s seeks these people out, trains them to make connections with people, and asks them to just be themselves and have fun. And they make Amy’s what it is – a unique and fun place to go.

Expect the music to be very indulgent, suiting the tastes of the employee who chose it for the evening, but not loud. Mexican Vanilla is the best seller here. My personal favorite? Coffee. Both on the menu all the time. But don’t be swayed by me or popular choice. Ask for samples if you can’t decide. This is one of those places you will remember for the flavor of the ice cream and the service of the staff. Oh, and don’t forget to get your picture taken in the photo booth to memorialize your visit to Amy’s.

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7 responses

27 11 2007
cbgrace

Amy’s Ice Cream is the BEST!!! Of course I am an Austin Original (born in Austin) so we grew up on Amy’s. After having traveled the US, I am proud to say that Amy’s is still the BEST!

27 11 2007
ieat

Allright, Casey, you can’t just say Amy’s is the best without at least telling me what your favorite flavor is.

28 11 2007
cbgrace

Well, I like the dutch chocolate with strawberries (I’ve had it with raspberries but that is strictly bring your own). Hey, how did you know my name?? You are freaking me out a little. 😀

28 11 2007
ieat

Oh, just a little sleuthing at your blog site. Thanks so much for the feedback, though. Keep an eye on my blog as there will be more than just SA restaurant reviews.

28 11 2007
Jorge Goyco

Amy’s in Austin on Guadalupe was featured in the movie “Slackers”. The band “Ed Hall” was playing.

It’s funny, when you can read the menu through the ear hole of the guy who’s serving you, you know you’re in an interesting place.

Love your posts, keep it up.

jorge

28 11 2007
ieat

Jorge, favorite flavor? Whatever happened to Ed Hall anyway? I remember that the cover of their first album used to be posted as a giant mural at the Blue Star Arts complex in San Antonio.

29 11 2007
Jorge Goyco

I think I’ve gotten them to smash some peanut butter in half chocolate half coffee once. Maybe that was a dream.

jorge

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