Ice Cream Flavors That Scream Michigan
| 3 min read
Ice cream is a sweet, delicious treat that can be enjoyed any time of year, but it tastes especially good on hot summer days. July is National Ice Cream Month, which pretty much gives everyone permission to dip a spoon into their favorite flavors, enjoy a cone, a sundae or even a malt. How much do people in the U.S. love ice cream? According to the Census Bureau, the average person eats about 20 pounds of ice cream each year, which equals about four gallons. And with hundreds of ice cream flavor combinations available, it might be tough to pick a favorite. But there are some kinds of ice creams and flavors that are distinctly Michigan.
Flavors that scream Michigan
There are a couple ice cream flavors that have been around for decades that are believed to have either originated or grown popular in The Mitten State. These are not your regular chocolate and vanilla flavors, but their fan following has continued through the years.
The flavor of this vibrant, blue ice cream is a bit of a mystery. Tasters might expect blueberry or blue raspberry. But Blue Moon enthusiasts will tell you it has hints of cotton candy, lemon-vanilla or even creamy bubble gum. What’s also open to interpretation is where exactly the Blue Moon flavor came from. It’s definitely an Upper Midwest ice cream, being sold largely in Michigan and Wisconsin. The homegrown House of Flavors ice cream shop and restaurant in Ludington has long laid claim to being Blue Moon’s originator in 1935, back when it was Miller Dairy. But other reports have it being created by a food chemist working in Milwaukee in the 1950s. The chemist’s company trademarked the flavor.
Supposedly named after the favorite comic book and cartoon caped crusader, Superman and its look-alike ice creams are typically an eye-catching combination of blue, yellow and red. The flavors can change depending on who is producing it. The yellow can be lemon or vanilla. The red can be black cherry or red-soda flavored. The blue is always Blue Moon. The credit for Superman’s distinct combination often goes to Detroit’s Stroh’s Brewery, which apparently was looking for some legal products to produce in the 1920s when Prohibition was keeping their beer line under wraps.
Mackinac Island Fudge
Mackinac Island is often called the “Fudge Capital of the World,” with more than a dozen shops dotting Main Street and selling this confection. It is no surprise plenty of ice creams have labels highlighting swirls or chunks of this delicious chocolate treat.
This sweet flavor combination quickly developed a big following in the 1990s when Wayland-based Denali Flavors introduced a mix of vanilla ice cream, peanut butter cups and Moose Tracks Fudge. There is now a whole Moose Tracks family of flavors including caramel and other nut and base flavor combinations.
Moomers, an ice cream producer near Traverse City, makes more than 150 flavors and a few have cherries in them. This is fitting, as Traverse City is one of the country’s biggest cherry-producing regions. Cherries Moobilee is a black cherry flavored ice cream that has chunks of brownies, a fudge swirl and black cherries mixed in.
Faygo-flavored ice creams
Detroit soda producer Faygo is a well-known brand across Michigan, with its signature flavors including Rock & Rye, Red Pop, Moon Mist, Grape and Pineapple Orange. Browndog Barlor and Restaurant, which has locations in Northville, Farmington and Lansing, have teamed up with Faygo to produce ice cream with flavors to match the iconic pops.
Photo credit: Getty Images