Still elated at the fact that I had just received some samples from New Orleans Ice Cream Company, I had to choose my first victim. There was a clear-cut winner to show me the way. I've had this pint in my cart at Ice Cream Source on numerous occasions, but always hesitated to the pull trigger after seeing the high price tag for shipping. Now it was in my possession. I was turned on to Hubig's pies by a friend on my last trip through New Orleans. All the flavors were tremendously tasty, but the apple versions were a step above the rest.
These little fried pockets of dough and fruit filling are phenomenal. Lucky for us, New Orleans Ice Cream Company decided to come along, break these heavenly pillows into bite-sized pieces and throw them into their super-smooth vanilla bean ice cream. Unlucky for me, I live too far away from Louisiana to get close enough to purchase either of these products. Then on July 27th, tragedy struck Savory Simon. A fire resulted in a total loss of this New Orleans landmark, gaining nationwide attention due to the plentiful amount of Hubig's pie lovers. Pie lovers that have gone as far as tattooing the cartoon baker on their body.
Now that these pies won't be produced for a while, and maybe permanently, scarcity is already becoming a factor. These pies are selling regularly on eBay for up to 20 times their original purchase price. Now, against all things logistic, I was holding a pint that was rapidly approaching extinction. Using an ingredient as incredible as these famous fried pies, the vanilla bean ice cream could probably get away with being sub-par. Pulling off the top to this gem, it felt a bit like I was opening a valuable, vintage Star Wars figurine, still in the original plastic wrapper.
The subtle sheen of the vanilla ice cream looked innocent enough. Only small speckles of Hubig's finest find their way to the top. I spoon out a heaping scoop and take my first taste of the New Orleans Ice Cream Company. Before even hitting the fragments of fried dough, I can't help but notice how exceptional the vanilla bean base turns out to be. Smooth, super-creamy and better than 95% of vanilla ice creams on the market. Usually acting as a vehicle, vanilla can be overlooked, but the fine folks at New Orleans Ice Cream Company put their vanilla bean base on the front line. After fully appreciating the base, then come the bits of pie.
They start out small, adding a tremendous aftertaste of fried apple pie. As I worked my way through the pint, the pieces became more bulky. By throwing different sized pieces of these pies about this vanilla bean ice cream, you get at least a few chunks in every bite, and some rather large lumps along the way. I greedily wish that all the hunks were humongous, but by varying in size, it really helps the overall profile of the flavor.
Accompanied by a super-sweet ribbon of apple fruit filling that added a slight chewy texture to the crumbly pie, all these pieces compliment each other perfectly. This slice of Americana was one of those few flavors that live up to the hype. It was a bittersweet moment polishing off the last bite. Not only because I was out of ice cream, but also because this flavor might be going on a long hiatus unless Hubig's can manage to rebuild after such a catastrophic setback.
Where I Found It: Ice Cream Source
Other Reviews: On Second Scoop