Well, there you have it, game over folks! Don’t even try to best the guys over at Chicago Soydairy.
I’ve read about their Temptations® brand soy ice cream for a while and finally found a local grocer selling several flavors of it, and glad I did. In fact, I made two trips to the Green Grocer last week for wee little pints of chocolate chip cookie dough, coffee and regular chocolate flavors. If they’d had the peach cobbler and green tea flavors, I would have bought those too.
This post will focus on the chocolate flavor, but only because I ate the other two pints before getting photos.
I’m also going to preface this review with my own pet peeves regarding chocolate ice cream and soy ice cream in general. The main issue with chocolate frozen desserts is that they lack a serious chocolate flavor. Chocolate is like a fine red wine, you don’t get the full bodied flavor experience unless it’s at room temperature. Which means that most chocolate ice creams just don’t taste very strongly of chocolate. You just can’t get there with a frozen dessert.
For starters, I noticed upon opening the container, Temptations chocolate ice cream is darker than expected, and actually darker than my photo shows. Then, I noticed that it’s texture is very creamy, like what you’d expect from a regular dairy-based product. Now here’s the good part, when I tasted it, WOW, it’s at least twice as chocolaty as any other soy ice cream I’ve had. I can’t compare it to Ben and Jerry’s or Haagen Dazs of course but I was an insanely happy chocoholic this weekend.
Then I became seriously bummed when I remembered that this was the last pint of chocolate at the Green Grocer on Saturday afternoon. I hope they get more in soon, this may have to be a weekly treat.
NOTE: Green Grocer is nearly on the corner of Grand and Noble on Chicago’s near west side. They’re right around the corner from my office, yay! Here’s what the pint cartons look like so you can spot them in the freezer:
So, what about the toot factor?
Yeah well, THAT’s my second beef with soy ice cream. You know how some people don’t digest soy very well and actually get a little, um…noisy after eating soy? Well, I was previously hooked on another manufacturer’s Mocha Almond Fudge flavor but had to make sure I ate it early enough in the day that it didn’t keep me up at night, if you know what I mean.
Temptations doesn’t have any negative effect on digestion, so far as I can tell. I’ve gone through 3 pints this weekend and nobody’s ducked because they mistook me for a gatt.
More info on Chicago Soydairy.
These are the most respectable and ethical soy dairy guys on the planet. Check out their website and you’ll see what I mean. Previously, I had no idea that most soy ice cream is manufactured on the same equipment as dairy ice cream. Actually, it never even occurred to me to wonder about it. This may not be a big deal to some vegans but if you’re strict and/or have diary allergies, this makes a difference. They also create a wide variety of interesting flavors without common allergens: eggs, tree-nuts, peanuts and dairy. They’re also Fair Trade Certified and Kosher.
As much as you may l like this product, don’t try to pack it in your bento lunch unless you want chocolate soup for your lunchtime dessert. I had actually devised a plan to create a double bowled set up with ice between the outer and inner bowls and my wee little scoop of Temptation in the inner bowl (scooped with a melon baller of course!). With nuts and a dark Michigan cherry on top. I thought it was BRILLIANT! Surely a mini bowl of ice would keep my 3 little scoops frozen until lunchtime right? What a fool I was. I was sitting there at my desk with visions of bento-sized banana splits and fancy sundaes in my future bentos while unbeknownst to me, my little test sundae was quickly melting into a puddle in my bento.
Oh well, it was still yummy…with a straw!