Though schools have been out for weeks now, today marks the official first day of summer. You can say goodbye to the gloomy, rainy days of spring and say hello to sunshine and warm weather. As the temperature climbs, what better way to cool down than with a frozen treat from one of these local spots?
Simply Rolled Ice Cream
This Columbus-based ice cream shop brought the rolled ice cream trend to Over-the-Rhine last July. Simply Rolled uses locally sourced ingredients, and the ice cream is made (and rolled!) fresh right in front of you. Choose from classic flavors like matcha berry, cookie dough, and salty caramel pretzel; try the monthly feature (June’s featured flavors are root beer float and summer berry blast); or create your own flavors by mixing different toppings.
32 W. 12th St., Over-the-Rhine, (513) 287-7716
Nothing screams summer like a classic vanilla soft serve ice cream cone with rainbow sprinkles. THE CONE adds a twist—literally—to this summer favorite with its famous orange vanilla swirl (the same swirl decorates THE CONE’s rooftop). Since the current location’s opening in 1995 (the Wren’s made ice cream out of a small shop for more than two decades prior), THE CONE has become a staple within the West Chester community. So don’t be surprised if you can’t find any seating or if the drive-thru line snakes out into the street.
6855 Tylersville Rd., West Chester, (513)-779-7040
The Village Parlor
In 1969, Lebanon community members dreamed of creating an old fashioned soda fountain. That dream resulted in The Village Ice Cream Parlor opening on Independence Day. (The Village Parlor has since shortened its name and opened a second location in downtown Hamilton.) The parlor’s classic vintage decor feels like stepping into an alternate universe—one where any problem can be solved with a scoop of ice cream—and the menu matches. From old-fashioned double-dip sodas served in a frosted glass with a cherry on top to specialty sundaes, it’s nearly impossible to leave unsatisfied.
22 S. Broadway St., Lebanon, (513) 932-6918
Aroma’s Java & Gelato
Aroma’s Java & Gelato, a westside favorite, has been bringing authentic Italian gelato to Cincinnati for more than a decade. The quaint shop attracts a variety of customers, from professionals fiercely typing away on laptops to friend groups (young and old) chatting away without worrying how much time has passed. With gelatos ranging from tangy forest fruit to sweet cookie dough, Aroma’s offers flavors for everyone’s taste buds. Pro-tip: Order your gelato as a shake to enjoy on the go.
6407 Bridgetown Rd., Mack, (513) 574-3000
You’ll drive right past this one unless you’re really paying attention. Snobug’s small walk-up window is stationed in the middle of a White Oak East strip mall on Cheviot Road. But leave all apprehension at the car, because you won’t want to miss out on Snobug’s shaved ice flavors. The menu is extensive—a four-column list, to be exact—and flavors can be mixed, so you don’t have to choose just one. Regardless of which flavor you choose, we suggest returning until you’ve tried them all.
5884 Cheviot Rd., White Oak East