It used to be that the banana split was the height of ice cream. My, how times have changed. The sky’s the limit at today’s ice cream shops, which defy gravity by piling up candies, sprinkles, and fruit in the smallest containers imaginable. San Antonio is now full of such spots, but we’ve searched high and low for the most extra. We may all scream for ice cream, but these frosty Alamo City treats prove that sometimes it screams back.
Chamoy City Limits
This ice cream truck from multitalented artist Ana Fernandez take raspas to the next level with house made syrups, Chinese candies, and chamoy. All of the icy confections are over-the-top, but none so much as the signature Picadilly with pickle brine, cherry Kool-Aid, chopped and sliced dill pickles, sour gummies, and chili salt. New for 2019 is a keto version, which replaces the sugary syrup with lime juice and adds a spray of pickles and cucumbers. Text "chamoy" to 21000 to find out its current location.
Ice Ice Baby
The mangonadas and ice cream creations at this Ingram Hills shop are so towering they might as well be architecture. Not frozen — but even more spectacular — are the piña and sandia locas. Starting with a hollowed out pineapple or watermelon, the team behind the counter reaches for the skies with sliced fruit, skewered sour ribbons, and a final flourish of paper umbrellas.
This ice cream shop’s vibrant creations are so over-the-top that it seems unfair to compare them to everyday scoops. Starting with a Hong Kong-style bubble waffle and a choice of ice cream flavors like Unicorn and Teenage Dream, guests can let their imagination run free with toppings. Live out those Little Mermaid fantasies with mermaid pearls or go full kawaii with panda cookies. And, of course, document the final creation on Insta.
Rolling Rey’s Ice Cream
Scoops are so 2019. The cool kids these days only eat their ice cream rolled at the three locations of this San Antonio shop. Here, Thai-style frozen spirals are given a San Antonio twist with flavors like Gansito, mangonada, and churro. There’s even the habanero and ghost chili topped El Diabilito for those who like a little heat with their cold. Be sure to try out the flavor of the month; July's is the Citrus Dream topped with a paleta.
Suck It: The Restaurant
The name might not sound friendly, but this Northwest Side shop has one of the happiest desserts around in its boba smoothies. Drinking more like a shake, these frosty creations can be blended with fruit, soda, or cake batter, customized with “sinkers” like fruit jellies, and festooned with macarons, powdered doughnuts, Pocky sticks, and whip cream. We’ll be the first to admit that the treat is ridiculous, but what’s summer without a little levity?