Friday, October 25, 2013

READER REVIEW: Mo's Review of Gifford's Muddy Boots

As much as I enjoy my share of funky ice cream flavors, I’m also a fan of simplicity sometimes. So when I saw Muddy Boots, another Gifford’s offering, at a gourmet grocery store I recently discovered, I was more than a little bit tempted. The flavor is described as “vanilla ice cream laced with rich caramel ripple and yummy brownie bites,” and while the concept seemed fairly basic, I was willing to fork over the almost $8 to get myself a quart.

When I first peeled back the lid, I was happy to see the caramel swirl peeking out. And all it took was a single teaspoon-sized dip to uncover a solid little chunk of brownie. That’s the thing I really love about Gifford’s, and why I’m willing to blow my weekly ice cream budget on a single quart: When it comes to mix-ins, you’re pretty much guaranteed to never be disappointed. Not only is the caramel swirl abundant, but the brownie pieces are rich, chewy without being dry, and plentiful. Throw in a really smooth, tasty vanilla base, and you’ve got the makings of one excellent concoction.

In fact, I really need to stop for a second and give a shout-out to the base. When you see the word “vanilla,” you open yourself up to the possibility of a base that’s bland, boring, and just plain not special. But when you sample a bite of Gifford’s vanilla, you get a totally different experience. Now I’m not going to be doing myself any favors as a writer when I say the following, but their vanilla is just plain good. No, sorry, it’s awesome—one of the best vanillas I’ve sampled to date. And when you add in the sweetness of the caramel and the chewiness of the brownie bits, you get a solid batch of ice cream that’s packed with flavor, contrast, and all-around deliciousness.

For those of you who managed to try Ben & Jerry’s Brownie Chew Gooder before it was yanked off Target’s shelves, this flavor can very easily serve as a replacement. I know I've said this before about Gifford's, but I find that their ice cream is consistently comparable in taste and quality to Ben & Jerry's, only it's not nearly as bad for you. I really wonder how they do it...

Where Bob Found It: Sickles Market (Little Silver, NJ)
Bob's Grade: A

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