The dog days of summer are fast approaching and they are sure to have us all craving something heavenly and sweet to cool off. What better way to cool down than with the best fro-yo, frozen screwdrivers, malts, floats and ice cream around Minneapolis? Go ahead and drive, pedal or run over to grab one of these treats now before they all melt.
Best Frozen Yogurt:
3100 Excelsior Blvd
Minneapolis, MN 55416
Yogurt Lab, which just opened up near Lake Calhoun’s northwest side, offers quite the frozen yogurt experience. You go in, select your cup, pick your favorites, load up your toppings, weigh, pay and enjoy. It’s set up to remind you of your elementary school science lab in a nerdy, cool new way. The flavors to choose from are as diverse as the crowd that frequents this place: Cupcake, Espresso, Tahitian Vanilla, Nutella and Pink Grapefruit are some of the best. Yogurt Lab has a lot to offer in terms of toppings as well. Think strawberries, crushed Snickers bars, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, walnuts and pineapple to name a few. It’s a great spot to stop with the kids or when out on a date. And don’t be afraid to sample the lot to ensure you get the best flavors.
Best Alcoholic Treat:
119 Washington Ave N
Minneapolis, MN 55401
Who doesn’t love brunch? And drinks with brunch? Even better. The brains behind the brunch menu at Haute Dish knew what would get you out of bed on a weekend when they dreamed up a delicious Frozen Screwdriver. It’s made from a blend of orange puree and Haute Dish’s own housemade vanilla vodka. So the next weekend you wake up and it’s already nearly 90 degrees, you’ll know right where to head.
3200 W Lake St
Minneapolis, MN 55416
If you’ve been to Burger Jones in Uptown and haven’t had one of its malts yet – what are you waiting for? If you have, you know exactly where to find the best take on this classic. The Salted Caramel Malt has just the right amount of sweet, smooth malty ice cream and bright, crunchy sea salt. Burger Jones also offers many other flavors of malts and shakes like chocolate, banana, Goober Monkey and The Elvis.
Best Root Beer Float:
3311 E 25th St
Minneapolis, MN 55406
The Birchwood Cafe is a staple in the Seward neighborhood of Minneapolis. People truly come from far and wide to sample the food and treats at this cafe, which Vegetarian Travel Guide describes as “one part neighborhood cafe and two parts eclectic organic kitchen.” One cold treat that must be ordered this summer is the Birchwood Float. It all starts with scoops of vanilla-bean ice cream churned just down the street at Izzy’s Ice Cream Shop and is topped with handcrafted, Fair Trade Certified root beer from Maine (Maine Root).
Best Ice Cream:
1007 W Franklin Ave S
Minneapolis, MN 55405
You can usually find a line forming on hot days at Sebastian Joe’s in Uptown, but don’t be deterred. The ice cream is worth your wait. This ice cream shop on the corner of Hennepin and Franklin Avenues uses only the best all-natural ingredients so you can feel (semi) good about enjoying a heaping pile of cold, dairy goodness. There are more than a hundred flavors on the list, so you’ll have to stop in often to try the newest options. Some of the flavors of summer include Basil Vanilla, Loco Coco (flavored with strawberry, coconut and cayenne pepper), Chocolate English Toffee, Strawberry Rhubarb, Surly Bender (flavored with Surly beer, of course) and many, many more.
And the Honorable Mention goes to…World Street Kitchen Food Truck for its out-of-this-world ice cream sandwich. Look for the truck on weekdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the Nicollet Mall downtown. For more information, visit the website or follow World Street Kitchen on Twitter (@eatwsk1) to stay up to the minute on its menu.
Related: Best Margaritas in Minnesota
Amber Ranzau lives on the edge of Uptown in Minneapolis and is a gal about town. She frequents the local restaurant scene, loves to support new and local businesses, follows the latest and greatest fashion and design trends, and she does all of this while working as an interior designer, spending time with her man, The Specialist, and taking care of her two goldfish Felix and Petunia and their tankmate Huey the Snail. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.