ENJOYING ICE-CREAM, SORBET and
GELATO in the FINGER LAKES
Purity Ice-Cream is an Ithaca institution. It’s been around longer than most of us …since 1936. I remember when the “Uni-Deli” on the corner of College Ave and Dryden Road served Purity Ice-Cream. When I was in “over-the-top” studying mode as a Cornell student in the 70s, the best reward for a good night’s work was a Purity mocha chip Sunday with hot fudge sauce. The best!!! I also love Mandigan Mint. They have all sorts of great flavors like The Finger Lakes Tourist: White chocolate chunks with hazelnut pieces in chocolate ice-cream. Everyone of course has their favorite but I recommend venturing out of your comfort zone to try something new. Purity also has great homemade muffins. Expect a line on hot summer days and early evenings after soccer games or softball games at Cass Park.
There are other great spots for ice-cream, sorbet or gelato if you venture out a bit. On Cayuga Lake in Interlaken you’ll find Cayuga Lake Creamery. This is a small Mom and Pop operation that makes all their ice-cream and sorbets on the premises. Jeff Kostick and Judy Gonroff offer at least 36 flavors. One of my favorites is Gianduia: chocolate hazelnut ice-cream. They also make a great tiramisu and wonderful pistachio ice-cream.
Jeff and Judymake excellent use of the Cayuga Lake wines by pairing them with fruit to make unusual and excellent sorbets. Some of the flavors you might find are: Americana Vineyards Barn Raising Red Dark Cherry Sorbet, Americana Vineyards Sweet Rosie Strawberry Sorbet, Buttonwood Grove Winery Riesling Orange Sorbet, Buttonwood Grove Winery Blackberry Briar Blackberry Sorbet, Cayuga Ridge Estate Winery Solo Peach Sorbet, Cobblestone Farm Winery Merlot Dark Cherry Sorbet, Goose Watch Winery Strawberry Splendor Strawberry Sorbet, Montezuma Winery Cranberry Bog Orange Sorbet. Sheldrake Point Vineyard Summer Blush Chocolate Ice Cream or Trelevan Merlot Raspberry Sorbet.
I also recommend their homemade waffle cones.
One of the hidden gems of the Finger Lakes is Skyland Farm and Gallery in Burdett NY, 7 miles North of Watkins Glen on Seneca Lake. You must visit this incredible place. First of all, set in a beautiful barn and built around an oak tree, this store is filled with crafts from over 300 artists including many local crafts people. Every craft imaginable is represented here from hook rugs, to metal sculptures, stain glass, and specially crafted broomsticks. It really is more like a museum except that many of the crafts are very reasonably priced. You can savor the wonderful view of Seneca Lake as you lounge in the porch swings or on the comfortable couches spread out on the shady deck or the front garden. The landscaping is unique and really needs to be seen first hand to be appreciated.