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You’ve Got to Try Graeter’s Ice Cream As Soon As You Possibly Can

Graeter’s puts everyday ice cream to shame. In case you mistrust my hyperbole: we’re jaded about these things. Our awesome Frozen buyer Guy is inundated with a constant flood of new and wonderful ice cream. (Poor Guy!) He tries the local, the handmade, the exquisite, flavors from classic to wildly funky. It takes something extraordinary to impress Guy.

So when a customer wrote to us: “Graeter’s Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip ice cream might change your life,” we took it with a grain of salt. But alas, they were right. We had to get it on our shelves, and so we did. Thanks, Guy! 

Since its founding in 1870 by Louis “Charlie” Graeter, this Cincinnati institution has made extraordinary ice cream. This was a time before mechanized freezers–ice cream had to be made in very small batches using rock salt and ice to freeze the cream. The Graeter family enjoyed many years of success until Charlie’s life was cut short by a tragic streetcar accident in 1919. Give up? No way. Charlie’s wife Regina opened the company’s first satellite store and continued to run and grow the business through the Roaring 20’s, the Great Depression, and World War II. Four generations laters, Grater’s is still a family business.

A lot has changed in 140 years. Like freezer technology! But Grater’s still makes ice cream two gallons at a time. They use a method called the French Pot Process. Fresh cream and egg custard gets swirled along the chilled sides of a slowly spinning French Pot Freezer. As the creamy blend thickens, a blade softly scrapes the sides of the pot, folding the ice cream into itself. This prevents air from whipping into the ice cream. The result–unreal creaminess. And density! Where a typical pint of ice cream can weigh as little as 8 ounces, a Graeter’s pint weighs nearly a full pound.

Then the fresh ingredients are folded in, and the finished goodness is hand-packed into pints. Even the chocolate chips are high quality. The blueberry pie tastes like a fresh-baked pie, mashed up into the best ice cream ever. Proof life is good.

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