- Il Laboratorio Del Gelato
95 Orchard Street, 212-343-9922
Orchard Street may be the very last place one would expect to find a gourmet-ice-cream parlor. But sure enough, hidden among the discount-clothing shops and next door to the Lower East Side Tenement Museum is Il Laboratorio del Gelato. In this cool-looking slip of a store, Jon F. Snyder, the Ciao Bella founder and grandson of Carvel franchisees, creates a rotating array of 100 irresistible gelatos and sorbets, all handmade on the premises, in small batches, from locally sourced seasonal ingredients. A small café with a blue tiled floor and white banquettes offers a place to sit and watch the whole operation—or just indulge. Of the twelve flavors offered daily, some of the favorites are hazelnut, coffee, banana, ginger, and an intense dark chocolate. Four toppings from hot fudge to butterscotch are available to gild the lily, and there are coffees, shakes, and sodas for those desiring, wisely, to linger.
Best Ice Cream
From the 2004 Best of New York issue of New York Magazine
So what exactly does “best” mean in a city with thousands of pizza joints, hundreds of celebrity masseuses, and museum-worthy concept shops on every corner? Well, in the case of this, our annual “Best of New York” roundup, there’s a heavy emphasis on what’s new or what has somehow remained virtually unheard of (until now, of course).