The art of ice cream: Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams and The Steven Kasher Gallery « blogging for burgers

The art of ice cream: Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams and The Steven Kasher Gallery

With the mercury hitting 90 degrees today here in New York, I think it is pretty much safe to say that summer has officially arrived (conveniently, just as the calendar hits June 21st).  I don’t know about you guys, but when the temperature rises, I start to think of cool summer treats: margaritas, white wine, gazpacho, Arnold Palmers, and, of course, ice cream.  Especially when that humidity breaks 80 percent, nothing hits the spot like some smooth and velvety ice cream.

Conveniently enough for me, the “Inspire your palate!” event this weekend at the Steven Kasher Gallery allowed me to get some of the cool stuff, while also expanding my cultural horizons and take in some art.  Since 90 percent of my photography intake consists of pictures found on Photograzing and Smitten Kitchen, I figured it would be good to expand my purview.  And an added bonus: Jeni of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams was there sampling some of her wares!

I had heard of Jeni’s after seeing Ryan D’Agostino wax poetic about her Queen City Cayenne flavor on The Best Thing I Ever Ate.  For those of you who missed that episode, Jeni Bauer of Jeni’s is a Columbus, Ohio-based ice cream maker who is a huge supporter of the farm-to-table movement.  Most of her flavors are seasonal and she sources a lot of her ingredients from local farms in Ohio.  If not from Ohio, her ingredients (and some of them are definitely unique) are selected from sustainable sources.  Needless to say, I was excited to give her stuff a taste.

Not to be outdone, the gallery had two shows on display to enjoy while noshing on some ice cream– Autochromes: Early Color Masterpieces from National Geographic and Joel Grey 1.3: New Color Images.  Interesting contrast: images from the advent of color imagery and a selection of images taken with a cell phone camera.

Jeni serving up some of her ice creams at the Steven Kasher Gallery

So how is the ice cream?  It is pretty tremendous.  Some of the flavors we sampled are more subtle than others, but they are all smooth and delicious (the flavors we tried are in the picture above, as well as a cherry/cherry lambic sorbet).  For me, the hands-down winner was the Dark Chocolate.  The flavor was just intense, and it was like eating cold fudge… some of the best fudge you’ve ever tasted.  While it may not be the best treat to help quench any 100-degree-day thirst, it was damned tasty.  Luckily enough for us (and our dinner guests last night), we were able to score a couple of pints to go, which were a great addition to our great pizza experiment (pizza stone on the grill vs in the oven– stay tuned in the coming week for the results).

So creamy. So refreshing. So... midwestern.

Even if you can’t get to Columbus (I don’t have any trips there planned), you can order Jeni’s ice creams online on her website, which is something to keep in mind for any special occasions such as birthdays, graduations, tonsillectomies, and Mondays.  Just plant a tree or something to offset the carbon.  And once you’ve got your ice creams, back them in an ice cooler, take them to the high line park and then go to the Steven Kasher Gallery (for all my New York-based readers).

Happy summer, y’all.

3 Responses to “The art of ice cream: Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams and The Steven Kasher Gallery”

  • Kate

    Oh Jeni’s… sweet sweet Jeni’s…

  • admin

    Ryan at Jeni’s has also commented on the old site (slight technical error in translating it here):

    Also — if you’ve got the fever for the flavor and don’t feel like shipping — you can buy pints right there in NYC.

    Here’s a map:

    And here’s a map for the rest of the country:

    Thanks for the nice post and pics, James!


  • Bravo. You capture the essence of the experience!

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