Summer Treats: The Best Ice Cream Shops in NYC

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When the heat settles on New York , it’s sometimes difficult to resist the call of hundreds of ice-cream makers. You deserve to for this sweet break, a New Yorkers’ favorite summer treat! Check out our list of our ‘just-cannot-resist’ ice creams by neighborhood.


Soft Swerve

Lower East 

(Photo by Molly Flores/NYC & Company)

Stop by this Asian-inspired ice cream shop to satisfy your soft-serve craving! Choose from one of the unique flavors of Ube Purple Yam, Macapuno Coconut, Matcha Green Tea or Black Sesame. Can’t decide? Opt for a swirl, or better yet, a ‘Swerve Special.’

Staff Pick: Go for the Matcha Green Tea. You’ll feel healthy eating this refreshing and tasty dessert. 


Big Gay Ice cream Shop 

East Village, West Village 

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Be quiet and eat your Salty Pimp. #thefattening

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Like many others, the adventure began with a modest Food Truck before becoming an institution in New York. Big Gay Ice Cream proposes unique and extravagant soft-serve flavors and toppings.

Staff Pick: Go for the Salty Pimp (vanilla, dulce de leche, sea salt and chocolate sauce )



La Newyorkina

West Village

This ice-cream and sweets shop is entirely Mexican-inspired. These all-natural and delicious Mexican ice creams and sweets will leave you drooling, from pastries, paletas, and cones on cones of flavors that will satisfy any pallet from chocolate chunk to blueberry corn.

Staff Pick: Sometimes less is more when it comes to ice cream- the classic vanilla bean might be the best vanilla ice cream I have ever tried… You can quote me on that one. 


Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream

East Village, West Village, Williamsburg, Seaport, Greenpoint

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So excited to have our brand new summer flavor PINE ICE CREAM WITH RED CURRANT AND CORNBREAD SWIRL in stores now!! 😄🎉 // First we infuse hand picked pine from @evantheforager and add the extraction into our homemade custard base, we then make a jam from scratch with Hudson Valley red currants // Then to top it off, we add chunks of homemade corn bread from @masienda maize … The result is a very delightful summer ice cream 😋🍦🍦 • • • • • • • • • • #icecream #artisan #natural #newyork #LA #hudsonvalley #mexico #happiness #fun #sharethelove #icecreamlove #madeinnewyork #specialflavors #summer #laeats #nyceats #corn #maize #currants #pine #nationalicecreammonth

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Find this artesian ice cream joint all throughout the city. Van Leeuven started as a successful Food Truck in Manhattan and Brooklyn before becoming a beloved and widly popular ice-cream emporium. The classic and vegan ice creams are made with fresh ingredients from scratch. These unusual flavors will spark your tastebuds for the better.

Staff Pick: be adventurous and go for the Earl Grey ice cream, absolutely delicious.



Odd Fellows Ice Cream Co.

Williamsburg, East Village, Nolita, Dumbo, Bushwick

 With locally-sourced, hormone-free and additive-free dairy, the creators of Odd Fellow’s 12 often rotating flavors are personally pasteurized in their very own Brooklyn kitchen, so you will get the freshest of ice cream out there. You’ll find any flavor imaginable (or not imaginable) here, from edamame and caramelized onion to gingerbread and peanut butter and jelly. Are you feeling daring with your ice cream?

Staff Pick: Try the Tasted Coconut Milk Chocolate, so rich and flavorful! 


Tipsy Scoop


#MDW is here 🍨 ☀🥂 📸 @lisannebeemer

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 Ever been carded for ice cream? Try out this boozy treat, where these artisanal and hand-crafted ice creams are infused with either bourbon, vodka, rum, tequila, sangria housing both seasonal and classic flavors to try. These little treats can be up to 5% ABV, so time to get #ICECREAMWASTED.

Staff Pick: Spiked Mint Chocolate Chip. This yummy concoction is made with mint chocolate ice cream infused with creme de menthe and chocolate liqueur.


M’o Gelato


Ah, some classic, creamy Italian gelato.  Curb your sweet tooth with this natural and authentic gelato joint in Nolita, serving over 20 flavors of both traditional and inventive tastes.

Staff Pick: The classic Stracciatella, just as it tastes in Italy!


Enjoy the weather in New York City on one of our walking tours to explore the Lower West Manhattan on our West Side Story walking tourUptown and Harlem, or neighborhoods throughout Brooklyn. Then grab some ice cream to cool off! Also, if you are interested in finding more to do in New York City, search through our complete range of tours, attractions and activities. We can also tailor-make programs specifically to match your desires and budgets. Harlem Spirituals is the ideal one-stop-shop to simplify your planning! Find more information on

Do you have a favorite ice cream flavor? Let us know! And if you found this article entertaining or helpful, please pass it along!


Did this post make you hungry? Check out more food recommendations:

A Guide to Some Classic New York City Food Experiences

New York City’s Food Scene: A Non-Exhaustive Guide

10 Classic New York Foods and Where to Eat Them