Amy's Ice Cream-Sweet Temptation: Taste an Austin, Texas Original
I love ice cream; in fact I would say it is my favorite food in the world. If ice cream had been available in the Old Testament it would have easily replaced the apple as Eve's temptation. History reveals many stories and myths surrounding the tasty treat dating back to Roman times. My favorite tale revolves around a King who wanted a dessert that had both the elements of summer and winter in the same dish. And some intrepid soul invented the hot fudge sundae. (My current personal favorite!)
Austin, Texas is home to the most original ice cream store on the planet. Amy's Ice Creams was founded by Amy Simons in 1980. She previously worked at another shop called Steve's. Steve's establishment was popular for what, at that time, was the completely bizarre & unconventional practice of taking homemade ice cream and smashing different ingredients (cookies, candy, nuts, fruit, etc.) together and serving it in a cone or cup. Seems strange these days when you can buy pints of just about any flavor mixed with just about any ingredient at your local supermarket! Steve's closed and Amy went on to open her own shop and she now has 12 locations in Austin as well as stores in Houston and San Antonio. But don't look for mass growth. At Amy's its all about quality, service and community.
Amy's special secret is no secret at all. They use only the best quality ingredients and don't cut any corners in producing the highest quality ice cream available in the world. Flavors change on a rotating basis and there are also seasonal fruit, berry, and nut ice creams available. In additional to the standard sugar cones, Amy's also makes their own large waffle cones that are tasty by themselves as well as a vehicle for the most luxurious ice cream you will ever eat, taste, nibble, gorge, or devour.
Amy's goes out of the way to employ interesting and compelling folks that know the true meaning of "Keep Austin Weird". The company mascot "Lola" an awesomely funny cow, is prevalent everywhere. Each store has its own whimsical personality and feeling. Children and adults alike are always delighted by the décor, the antics of the employees (there are often displays of ice cream juggling which, I know sounds strange but trust me on this one) and the overall ambience that goes along with the most flavorful, richest, tastiest, creamiest ice cream you will ever put in your mouth.
My favorite location is, obviously, the one closest to my home. Amy's in the Mira Vista shopping center 2765 Bee Caves Road is managed by the wonderfully bright, energetic and cheerful Melissa Hanson. She is a true disciple of the Amy's mentality and a purveyor of all that is delicious in the world of ice cream. In the interest of full disclosure I have to tell you that our son, Morgan, was an employee at this location until he recently left for college. I don't mind admitting how proud his mom and I were that he managed to get hired because it is something of a challenge to get accepted. Amy's looks for employees who are a little different, somewhat interesting, and creative as well as hard working. Although maybe not as significant as being drafted by the Dallas Cowboys or nominated for the Pulitzer Prize, we were thrilled to know someone on the inside of the Amy's empire. And I admit I may have used the connection to get a few extra sprinkles of "crushin's"!?!
Enough of this talk... I cannot think of anything but ice cream now so, as soon as I post this I will be driving over to the Mira Vista store for my current favorite obsession. (My hands tremble in anticipation as I hasten to finish typing and I begin to expectantly look forward to the sinfully extravagent indulgence). Pictured at left and served up with good humor and a smile (by my favorite Pit Boss/Scoop at the Mira Vista location) the not so discrete object of my desire. A three scoops Sundae of Mexican vanilla, chocolate chip cookie dough and Belgium chocolate (with Oreos crushin's) covered partially with Amy's homemade hot fudge and a half scoop of their warm praline sauce. This artery clogging concoction will be topped with freshly whipped cream, fresh sliced strawberries, and some mixed nuts. Eaten with a plastic spoon ONLY (to prevent freezing of the tastebuds and enhance the full flavor of the frozen dessert). Okay, I can hear all the health nuts and fussbudgets out there but before you start preaching, please remember, life is S H O R T, eat dessert first and... I know, I know.... I will have to run an extra 5 or 7...or, oh whatever, a bunch of extra miles this week, but it will be worth it. Remember to indulge responsibly...
Do yourself a favor; if you are lucky enough to live in or travel to Austin, San Antonio or Houston Texas, visit Amy's and enjoy a world class treat that originated right here in Austin Texas!