Eating an ice cream cone on a sunny day is a quintessential summer activity. Here are 12 local shops in Calgary where you can get a refreshing scoop of hard ice cream, soft serve, gelato or sorbet.
Located on a quiet street in the community of West Hillhurst, Amato Gelato is the perfect spot to go for a scoop of classic Italian gelato. The shop always has 70 rotating flavours in its case, including 48 gelatos and 22 dairy-free options. This is a great spot to walk to for dessert after dinner in Kensington.
Try: Dairy-free lemon pomegranate (when available).
2104 Kensington Rd. N.W., 403-270-9733, amatogelatocalgary.com
Dellor was the first to introduce rolled ice cream to Calgary when it launched at the Stephen Avenue Farmers’ Market in 2016. Its brick-and-mortar store opened in northeast Calgary in 2017. The popular treat is created by placing liquid ice cream on a chilled surface, freezing it into a thin sheet and then scraping it into rolls. The rolls sit upright in a bowl and are finished with toppings. Dellor has six regular flavours that include mango and s’mores, as well as two seasonal flavours. Add toppings such as Pocky sticks and Oreo cookies for an extra cost.
Try: The lychee-berry made with lychee and raspberry (available until mid-July).
1309 Edmonton Tr. N.E., facebook.com
The Fiasco Gelato food truck is a Calgary summer staple, but visit its southeast factory and cafe to try flavours you won’t find at the truck or even in stores. The cafe offers 12 gelato and sorbetto flavours that change daily, cycling through around 50 unique flavours each season. Get a scoop or a pint to take home if you really fall in love with one. The cafe also sells Rosso coffee.
Try: The new cherry limeade sorbetto (dairy- and gluten-free).
110, 221 19 St. S.E., 403-452 3150, fiascogelatoshop.com
Known as “Lics,” this unassuming, family-owned ice cream parlour in Parkdale has stood the test of time since 1982. The shop serves more than 30 flavours in generous portions, offering ice cream, sorbet, frozen yogurt and even sugar-free and lactose-free options. Its location near the Bow River makes for a nice summer stroll with cone in hand.
Try: Its signature yotopia frozen yogurt made with low-fat vanilla frozen yogurt and up to three kinds of frozen fruit. Served in a dish, waffle cone or waffle bowl.
3410 3 Ave. N.W., 403-283-3578, lics.ca
There’s usually a long line-up outside Made By Marcus’s 17th Avenue S.W. location, but it’s always worth the wait. Around half of the dozen ice cream flavours change seasonally, plus there are three kinds of sundaes, two soft serve flavours and five kinds of ice cream cakes (get the lemon curd blueberry). Made By Marcus is also known for its unique flavour combinations – past flavours have included Leffers Carrot Cake, banana churro and coffee grinds, pumpkin cashew coconut and malted chocolate honeycomb. A second location in Hillhurst is opening soon.
Try: The Happy Camper Sundae. It’s made with vanilla soft-serve ice cream, hot fudge, graham-cracker crumbs and a torched marshmallow.
121, 1013 17 Ave. S.W., 403-452-1692, madebymarcus.ca
This 1950s-style ice cream shop has been a neighbourhood staple in Marda Loop since 1981. Inside you’ll find retro trinkets and servers in old-school uniforms scooping up more than 60 flavours including classics like bubble gum and butter pecan. There’s also a second location in West Springs and both shops are open seasonally from April until September.
Try: A scoop of Saskatoon pie in a waffle cone.
2048 42 Ave. S.W., 403-287-3838 and 1114, 8561 8A Ave. S.W., 403-234-7100, myfavoriteicecream.com
Scrollio is another rolled ice cream shop located in Lower Mount Royal. Choose from a dozen flavours and add extra toppings like nerds and M&Ms to your ice cream rolls for free. Bubble waffles (sweet egg-based waffles featuring bubbles instead of squares) with rolled ice cream were recently added to the menu. And if you’ve got late-night craving, you’re in luck – the shop is open until 2 a.m. on weekends.
Try: Coffee Cup made with chocolate ice cream, a shot of coffee, chocolate chips and chocolate sauce.
1107 17 Ave. S.W., 403-708-9487, letsgoscrollio.com
Calgary’s newest ice cream shop just opened in Crescent Heights and serves up decorative, sky-high soft serve. It’s from the team behind neighbouring Po-ke and the menu includes seven signature flavours that can be enjoyed in a cone or cup. Both cost just $5.95. The cones even come with a rimmed cone-holder to catch any fallen toppings so they don’t go to waste. Snap an Instagram pic of your ice cream between the shop’s wings logo on the front window.
Try: The Panda (because we can’t get enough of pandas this summer). It’s made with chocolate and vanilla twist soft serve topped with Oreo cookie crumbs.
918 Centre Street N.E., facebook.com
Sweet Tooth was the first brick-and-mortar store to offer rolled ice cream when it opened in Chinatown in 2016. A second location just opened on 17th Avenue S.E. There are eight regular ice cream flavours on the menu and you can pay extra for more toppings. At the newest location, the menu also includes three slushies and five cold teas with flavours like Alpine Berry made with lime juice, raspberries, aloe vera cubes and mint leaves.
Try: Birthday Cake made with vanilla bean ice cream rolled with golden Oreos, confetti sprinkles, and raspberry sauce. It’s topped with whipped cream and raspberry drizzle.
206 Centre St. S.E., 403-832-0128 and 105 17 Ave. S.E., 403-452-8152, sticyyc.com
Uzu Taiyaki serves soft serve inside of taiyaki, a sweet Japanese waffle cake in the shape of a fish. The Asian-inspired flavours can vary but have included matcha, red bean and Thai milk tea. Certain flavours are available swirled together. Choose from around 15 toppings such as Teddy Grahams, sprinkles and rolled wafers.
Try: Pandan and ube swirl for a pretty green-and-violet-coloured swirl. Pandan kind of tastes like coconut but less sweet, while ube is a purple yam that has a slightly nutty taste.
1, 110 2 Ave. S.E., facebook.com
One of the original spots for handcrafted, small-batch ice cream in Calgary, Village now has three locations around the city. Choose from its 10 core flavours like maple pecan, cardamon or toasted coconut, or opt for one of the three to four seasonals. At the original Victoria Park location, enjoy your ice cream on one of the patio benches outside the storefront.
Try: The mango coconut milk is currently available at all locations and it’s dairy-free.
Three locations, villageicecream.com
This ice cream shop is another new spot that opened earlier this year in Auburn Bay. Its pastel pink decor and bow-tie-wearing servers are inspired by vintage mom-and-pop shops. The 12 ice cream flavours include strawberry rhubarb, salted caramel, mango sorbet and more. XO also sells fresh waffles that come in classic sugar, churro or chocolate chip waffle flavours. If you can’t decide between ice cream and waffles, try a delicious waffle-topped sundae.
Try: The blackberry lavender flavour.
808, 100 Auburn Meadows Dr. S.W., 403-796-3975, xoicecream.com