Trend Watch: Designer Ice Cream Trucks


Who doesn’t remember the thrill of playing outside and catching wind of one of those infectious ice cream truck songs? Now in various cities, you can find new and improved versions of the original Good Humor man. But everything hasn’t been sunshine and roses for these truckers. According to the New York Times , Grant Di Mille and Samira Mahboubian of Street Sweets, “…have been threatened at the depot where they park the truck; cursed by a gyro vendor who said that he would set their truck on fire; told to stay off every corner in Midtown by ice cream truck drivers’…” Let’s forget about turf wars for a minute, and examine a few of the four-wheeled sugar fixes causing all of this ruckus.

In New York…

Big Gay Ice Cream Truck Doug Quint has only been in the ice cream business for a few months. When he’s not serving ice cream, he plays the bassoon professionally. Check out his stimulating toppings: caramelized bacon, Trix cereal, Nutella… and rainbow sprinkles, natch. We didn’t realize ice cream could be gay, but we like it. Follow him on Twitter @BigGayIceCreamTruck.

Street Sweets According to their website, Grant Di Mille and Samira Mahboubian’s mobile bakery boasts a seasonal menu that “contains all natural ingredients — organic milk, raw sugar, and fair-trade coffee beans from a sustainable rain forest that are precision-roasted locally.” Follow them on Twitter @StreetSweets.

Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream The Rolls-Royce of NYC’s ice cream trucks — also ecologically aware and locally conceived, Van Leeuwen trucks serve “standard” but delicious flavors: vanilla, chocolate, ginger, hazelnut, etc. Be sure to check out their newest flavor: Cinnamon. Follow them on Twitter @VLAIC.

In Los Angeles…

Coolhaus If there were ever such a thing as a hipster ice cream sandwich a Coolhaus one would be it. Two architects, Natasha Case and Freya Estreller, conceived the idea and debuted at Coachella 2009. The truck itself is sans annoying melodies and includes photo nods to architectural wonders. The menu includes flavors such as “Mintimalism,” “Richard Meyer Lemon,” “Miles Vanilla Rohe,” “Louis Kahntaloupe,” and “Frank Behry.” We hear they’re thinking about expanding into San Franciso and NYC. Follow them on Twitter @COOLHAUS.

In Chicago…

Mr. Tastees A powder-blue vintage ice cream truck that sells custom laser-cut acrylic jewelry and graphic tees probably shouldn’t be included in this list, but we hear that the designer behind it — a favorite of the Cool Kids, Twista, and Flosstradamus — likes to give out free Popsicles to passersby. Plus some of his shirts sport ice cream images. This sartorial wonderment can only be found in Chicago’s Wicker Park. Follow him on Twitter @MrTastees.

OK: Who did we leave out? And more importantly, are you buying into the haute truck trend or do you prefer an old-fashioned Mr. Softee cone?