It sure is hot out there! When visiting Walt Disney World during the summer, there's one thing that always comes to my mind: ice cream! With over 100 restaurants and eateries to choose from, finding that perfect frosty treat can be a bit overwhelming. Here's your guide to a few of the best chilled treats from around the World that are sure to make this the "Coolest Summer Ever."
I don't think that there's a spot elsewhere on Walt Disney World property that smells better than the Magic Kingdom. Once your feet hit Main Street, U.S.A, warm aromas of cinnamon, vanilla, and chocolate surround you. If you can resist the temptation of the Confectionary, soon you'll find the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor. This nostalgic ice cream shop is the perfect place to find Mickey cones with chocolate ears, hot fudge sundaes, and delectable floats. The best "scoop" of them all though is the ice cream cookie sandwich. This yummy treat features your choice of ice cream plopped between two freshly baked chocolate chip cookies.
Over in Adventureland, check out the recently expanded Aloha Isle for the infamous Dole Whip. This refreshing soft-serve features blended in pineapple or vanilla flavors; you can even get a swirl of them both for a delicious combo treat. If pineapple is your thing, take this a step further and try a Dole Whip Float with fresh pineapple juice. You can also find these goodies at Pineapple Lanai at Disney's Polynesian Resort with the option of purchasing a souvenir tiki bowl or sipper.
Not surprisingly, Epcot's World Showcase is home to several eateries serving up icy treats. One of my favorites is at Via Napoli in the Italy pavilion. The Coppa Brutti Ma Buoni is an Amarena cherry and vanilla gelato sundae complete with fresh whipped cream and chocolate swirls. Its name means "ugly but good," and I don't know if I'd consider it ugly, but it is definitely good!
If you're looking for an Italian treat that's a bit more mobile, check out Gelati, a dessert kiosk towards the back of the pavilion. There you'll find a variety of gelato flavors and specialties including Coppa Amicizia, a mixture of cookies and cream, strawberry, and Fior di Latte (milk-flavored) gelatos topped with strawberry sauce, whole strawberries, and whipped cream. Nearby in France, L’Artisan des Glaces combines two of the country's delicacies - warm brioche bread and chilled ice cream - to create the Croque Glacé. Sealed with a raspberry or chocolate sauce, it is quickly becoming a fan favorite that will have you saying "Bonjour" in no time!
Disney's Animal Kingdom
After being on safari at Disney's Animal Kingdom, there's nothing better than a cool treat in the shade. Two locations, in particular, come to mind: Tamu Tamu Refreshments and the Anandapur Ice Cream Truck. The first recently switched over to a dessert-only menu that includes chocolate-covered espresso beans, Mickey ice cream sundaes, and chocolate waffles with espresso mousse. However, those looking for something with a bit "more" to it won't be disappointed. Tamu Tamu also has the pineapple Dole Whip mentioned above with the option of being topped with coconut or dark rum. This was once only to be found during Epcot's International Food & Wine Festival, so now being able to enjoy it at Animal Kingdom is a great addition. Over at Anandapur Ice Cream Truck, you can cool off with a frosty soda float before continuing your adventure.
Disney's Hollywood Studios
Home of Frozen Summer Fun, Disney's Hollywood Studios definitely has a few items to cool you down, but also satisfy your craving for American comfort food. Hollywood Scoops, an ice cream kiosk near the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, has just that in its Apple Crisp à la Mode. This cinnamon apple dessert will satisfy your craving with vanilla ice cream, warm apples, caramel sauce, and streusel. Just be sure to get it after you check into the Hollywood Tower Hotel.
The 50's Prime Time Café has a unique offering as well: the Peanut Butter and Jelly Milkshake. Many grew up eating PB and J sandwiches everyday at school, so why not offer it as a milkshake? The Cafe combines - you guessed it - peanut butter and jelly with milk and ice cream to create a filling cool treat. Dad's Brownie Sundae is also a creative option mixing a warm brownie, ice cream, and some fun toppings including caramel corn.
Downtown Disney/Disney Springs
Now that Downtown Disney is transitioning over to its new form, Disney Springs, guests will find more and more to explore. One of the newest additions is The BOATHOUSE located in the first of four new "neighborhoods" of the Springs called The Landing. This fine dining restaurant features a dessert of a gargantuan size: Gibson's S'Mores Baked Alaska. This four-person dessert starts off with Häagan Dazs rocky road ice cream, is covered in marshmallow, and then is toasted with pieces of rich dark chocolate forming the outer shell. It's impressive to say the least!
Not up for tackling it yet? Stop by Ghirardelli Ice Cream & Chocolate Shop for a Gold Rush. Made with a fresh waffle cone hand-dipped in rich Ghirardelli chocolate, the sundae includes vanilla ice cream, homemade hot fudge, peanut butter, whipped cream, chopped almonds, a cherry, and a Ghirardelli chocolate.
Finally, if you're still craving gelato, check out the new Vivoli Gelateria. This family-owned business reigns from Florence and Vivoli is their first-opened gelateria outside of Italy. Recipes date back to 1932 which has allowed plenty of time for them to be perfected. A customer favorite is Caramello Salato, which means salted caramel. Made with fresh, top-quality ingredients, this treat is adorned with a soft ribbon of caramel flavor, complete with crunchy salted caramel bits. What a perfect way to break from shopping!
I hope that you enjoyed seeing some of the top frosty favorites for this summer at Walt Disney World. Did your favorite make the list? Let us know in the comments section below!