As we enter the dog days of summer, Gut Check feels it's important -- our duty, even -- to point out our local ice cream purveyors, those oases of frozen treats spread throughout the city, waiting to provide temporary relief.
One of the best, and definitely the most unique, is I Scream Cakes (2641 Cherokee Street, 314-932-5758). Located in the Cherokee neighborhood, I Scream has grown up alongside the evolving and diverse south-city community, dishing out crazy flavors and combinations that completely overhaul the traditional scoop of ice cream. See also: - 8 Best Ice Cream Spots in St. Louis
I Scream Cakes opened up shop two years ago, and as owner/artist Kerry Soraci explains, a lot can change in two years. "Getting used to having a business has been the biggest thing," she says. "We got rid of the bouncy balls and have tables and chairs now," a symbolic moment when Soraci transitioned from impromptu seating to real furniture. And in many ways, I Scream's story of growth illustrates Cherokee's own recent history of grassroots development and improvement. It's a transformation evidenced by the opening of news bars, sandwich shops, bakeries and restaurants, all of which leads Soraci to predict: "It's pretty exciting what is going to happen here in the next five years."
Besides stools and tables, though, the biggest improvement at I Scream -- and what Soraci is most proud of -- is undoubtedly the ice cream itself. "There's been more of a focus on flavors...I've dialed in the recipes," Soraci says before scooping up small dollops and placing them on a painter's palette -- an ingenious way of presenting a "flight" of flavors.