Few things are more essential to the perfect summer than ice cream. From traditional flavors to creative mash-ups, Maine has no shortage of year-round and seasonal ice cream stands offering something for every taste. To help you figure out where to get your best licks in this summer, we offer this sampling of southern Maine ice cream stands.
Grab your cone and then head down to Kettle Cove Beach to watch the sunset.
WHERE: 2 Bowery Beach Road, Cape Elizabeth
HOURS: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily
INFO: 799-3533; kettlecoveicecream.com
NOTABLE FLAVORS: Gannon Ball, chocolate with caramel swirl and malted milk balls; Needham, coconut with chocolate chips; and Salty Caramel, caramel-based ice cream with salt and caramel swirl.
For a tasty twist on traditional ice cream, try frozen custard, which is made with egg yolks
WHERE: 1108 Lewiston Road, New Gloucester
HOURS: 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. daily
INFO: 926-3553; On Facebook at Hodgmans Frozen Custard
NOTABLE FLAVORS: They typically offer vanilla, chocolate and one or two specialty flavors, such as Irish Cream and Peanut Butter.
The folks at Garside’s know a thing or two about ice cream. They’ve been at it for more than 60 years.
WHERE: 320 Ferry Road, Saco
HOURS: 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily
INFO: 283-0045; On Facebook at Garside’s Ice Cream
NOTABLE FLAVORS: Fluffernutter, Ginger, Milky Way
Big Daddy’s North opened 10 years ago. In addition to ice cream they’ve got sherbet, frozen yogurt and sugar-free ice cream. The original Big Daddy’s is in Wells and has been around since 1976.
WHERE: 22 Hollis Road, Hollis Center
HOURS: Noon to 9 p.m. daily
INFO: 929-3200; bigdaddysnorth.com
NOTABLE FLAVORS: Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip, Grape Nut, Piña Colada, Orange Pineapple, Coconut Oreo
It’s just a quick hop to the beach and town center where sand, waves, rides and other fun awaits. Plus, they’re entire theme is baseball. The menu includes The Dugout Floor, The Muddy Cleat, The Closer, The Slider and The Wind-Up.
WHERE: 156 Saco Ave., Old Orchard Beach
HOURS: 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday to Thursday; 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday to Sunday.
INFO: 934-4402, fielderschoiceicecream.com
NOTABLE FLAVORS: Butterfinger, Baked Indian Pudding, Chocolate Almond Joy, Cotton Candy
This summer marks Martel’s 30th year in the ice cream business. That means three decades of making frozen magic. They also have an 18-hole mini-golf course on site.
WHERE: 757 Portland Road (Route One), Saco
HOURS: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily, open until 10 p.m. in July and August
INFO: 283-1775; martelsicecream.com
NOTABLE FLAVORS: Coffee Oreo, Chocolate Raspberry Delight, Purple Cookie (black raspberry with Oreo pieces).
This stand is actually an old railroad car! You can take a stroll around the family farm and visit with the animals while you enjoy your ice cream.
WHERE: 137 Walnut Hill Road, North Yarmouth
HOURS: Noon to 9 p.m. daily
INFO: 829-3723; tootsicecream.com
NOTABLE FLAVORS: Caramel Cashew Delite, Chocolate Candy Store Floor, Pig Pen, Cherry-O-Charlie, Biscotti Crunch, Maple Bacon