Thursday, May 3, 2012

Salt and Straw: Fancy Farm-to-Cone Ice Cream

Getting the scoop at Salt and Straw 
Just when I thought Portland couldn’t get climb the foodie ladder much higher, I caught wind of Salt and Straw, a self-described farm-to-cone purveyor of high quality ice cream, made from the holy trinity of “local, sustainable and organic” ingredients.

The flavor names sound like they’re plucked from a high-end bistro — take Honey Lemon Ricotta and Arbequina Olive Oil for example. This elevated tone around something as simple as ice cream made made me ask: Is Salt and Straw a tad too Portlandia for its own good? But after indulging in the Almond Brittle with Salted Ganache, I had my answer. Indeed, this ice cream is a culinary achievement.

The night I went, there was a line out the door - and that was a weeknight. It wasn’t just adults enjoying the stuff. There were plenty of little kids in the industrial-chic surroundings slurping down high-end waffle cones at $3.75 a pop. And I mean little kids – like under six years old. Which made me hearken back to my own childhood, when a night out for ice cream meant a trip to Baskin-Robbins, or maybe Tastee Freez for a chocolate dip. I also couldn’t help but think that, if at age four, you acquire a taste for Honey Balsamic Strawberry with Cracked Pepper ice cream, a Drumstick from the Good Humor truck might not cut it anymore.

Lining up for artisan ice cream 
But enough nostalgic musings on childhood and the joys of crappy ice cream loaded with artificial ingredients. Let’s get back to the good stuff. Did I mention they also offer flights? Yes, that’s right — you can now get a flight of ice cream. Ain't life grand?

Apparently, Oprah likes the stuff too. And it doesn’t get much better than that.

Salt and Straw
2035 NE Alberta Street
Portland, OR 97211‬