TasteToronto | Small batch ice cream and gelato to try this spring

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Small batch ice cream and gelato to try this spring

Small batch ice cream and gelato to try this spring

Small batch ice cream and gelato to try this spring

Spring has sprung and ice cream season is upon us. Yet, it seems the cold, dreary winter didn't stop several new ice cream pop-ups and shops from opening. Ice cream and gelato are having a moment right now and it is all about small-batch, handcrafted and premium pints. We have forgone the nostalgic scoops of our childhood, from brightly-hued cotton candy to artificially flavoured mint chocolate chip; the flavours we once unwittingly loved don't measure up to what people are scooping these days. Rich custard bases, stabilizer free with no additives and brimming with ingenuity. Creations like yuzu raspberry swirl and banoffee pie, filled with generous handfuls of home-made mix-ins like sponge toffee and sourdough crumb, there is a newfound appreciation for the depth and complexity possible when it comes to this new wave of confectioners.

We have rounded up several notable small-batch ice cream pop-ups and shops that are worth checking out this spring -- we guarantee they'll convert any skeptic. From ice cream, frozen custard, health-conscious gelato and vegan options, these small-batch creators offer something for everyone.

Creamery X

Creamery X

This new ice cream shop on Jarvis offers small-batch, hand-made frozen custard and vegan ice cream. Made from a rich base of sugar, cream and egg yolks, the resulting ice cream is much denser and richer than its eggless counterpart. Behind Creamery X is business partners Bonnie and Melissa, who started conceptualizing the idea during the winter in quarantine. Their ice cream takes a total of 3 days to make, which involves 24 hours for the base to cure and develop flavours. Everything is made by hand, including all of their mix-ins. Expect unique flavours that are hard to find anywhere else, like Mom's Bourbon Butter Tart, Vegan Coconut Cream Pie, Carrot Cake, The Homer and one of their signature flavours, The Elvis, which is comprised of a fresh banana ice cream combined with a peanut butter swirl and a chocolate sourdough crunch.

The Screamery

The Screamery

This ice cream shop functions as a small-batch operation with limited-edition flavours available and is churned weekly for optimal freshness. There are only a few flavours available per week. This week features a Chocolate Caramel Mini Egg flavour (that is already sold out) and a Spiced Caramel Carrot Cake flavour. The Screamery also offers a Pint Club, where members receive 4 pints of different ice cream flavours the first Sunday of every month. Orders can be made through their website for curbside pickup at Queen and Gladstone.

Ice Creamonology

Ice Creamonology

This ice cream shop is helmed by chef Onur Yilmaz, who holds a bachelor's degree in gastronomy and culinary arts. Opened just a few months ago, the shop in Toronto's Harbourfront is serving handcrafted premium ice cream with flavours that use no artificial ingredients. You'll find flavours like Turkish coffee, mint & chocolate chip and pistachio.

Honey’s

Honey’s

Once a pop-up operation evolved into a permanent location this past winter that sells plant-based premium pints. Behind Honey's is Ashley Wittig, co-creator of Bunner's Bake Shop and devout ice cream lover, who was always searching for an equally delicious and creamy, vegan alternative. Every batch of ice cream is made-by-hand by Wittig herself and only uses high-quality and often organic ingredients. Located at 1448 Dundas St, you can pick up flavours like peanut butter & saltine crackers, earl grey and plain yogurt & blueberry jam.

On Third Thought Gelato

On Third Thought Gelato

This health-conscious gelato focuses on making a quality product free of nuts, gluten, dairy and eggs -- but they never compromise flavour. The small-batch operation ships in ingredients from Italy and uses only fresh and seasonal fruits. Their packaging is also eco-friendly, with completely biodegradable cups and spoons. Flavours include mojito, mango, pina colada, watermelon, apple pie and more and can be ordered online via their website for contactless delivery!

House Scoops

House Scoops

Started by ex-Buca chef Mathew Cribari, this small-batch gelato operation is slinging pints of old-school gelato made with high-quality Sheldon Creek Dairy from Alliston, Ontario. Cribari even takes requests for unique flavour ideas and so far, he has created options like Vietnamese iced coffee, caramelized banana, Hojicha green tea and lemon creamsicle. Orders can be placed via Instagram for Sunday deliveries.

Good Behaviour

Good Behaviour

Good Behaviour Ice Cream (GB) is a small-batch ice cream venture started by Michael Lam and Eric Chow, who worked together at renowned Italian restaurant Ascari. The two decided to pursue a lifelong passion for ice cream and were inspired to branch off independently as COVID continued to rage on. GB started to garner attention after they launched their pints in tandem with a meal offered by the popular pop-up Sunny's Chinese. Since the initial launch, the two are selling their pints online, with pre-orders opening Wednesday at 12 p.m., but quantities remain extremely limited. The plan is to eventually open their own brick-and-mortar location that will allow them to further experiment with new flavours and textural components. You'll find flavours like Honey Nut Cereal, Hong Kong Milk Tea, Torta Della Nonna, Strawberry Cheesecake and Afternoon Tea.

Ruru Baked

Ruru Baked

Ruru Baked was founded in 2017 by pastry chef Luanne Ronquillo as a small-scale ice cream brand that released weekly pint drops. Yet, it wasn't until the summer of 2020 that Ruru Baked really started to take off and to get your hands on one of the sought-after pints became quite a feat. Following months of resounding success, Ronquillo is in the process of opening up Ruru's first and very own storefront location in Bloordale Village.

Ronquillo's ice cream is unique compared to other options in the city as it is custard-based, meaning the base of the cream incorporates egg yolks, resulting in a richer, creamier and more complex flavour. The technique is a traditional one and common in France. Not only does Ronquillo focus on the base of her product but she puts emphasis on flavour ideation and using fresh or hand-made mix-ins. You'll find a wide array of flavours like Brown butter, Honey and Sage; Pandan; Banoffee Pie and Yuzu Raspberry Swirl, as well as a few vegan flavours.

Small batch ice cream and gelato to try this spring

Guides / Spots

8 months ago

Small batch ice cream and gelato to try this spring

Robin Winship

Robin Winship

Instagram

Spring has sprung and ice cream season is upon us. Yet, it seems the cold, dreary winter didn't stop several new ice cream pop-ups and shops from opening. Ice cream and gelato are having a moment right now and it is all about small-batch, handcrafted and premium pints. We have forgone the nostalgic scoops of our childhood, from brightly-hued cotton candy to artificially flavoured mint chocolate chip; the flavours we once unwittingly loved don't measure up to what people are scooping these days. Rich custard bases, stabilizer free with no additives and brimming with ingenuity. Creations like yuzu raspberry swirl and banoffee pie, filled with generous handfuls of home-made mix-ins like sponge toffee and sourdough crumb, there is a newfound appreciation for the depth and complexity possible when it comes to this new wave of confectioners.

We have rounded up several notable small-batch ice cream pop-ups and shops that are worth checking out this spring -- we guarantee they'll convert any skeptic. From ice cream, frozen custard, health-conscious gelato and vegan options, these small-batch creators offer something for everyone.

Creamery X

Creamery X

This new ice cream shop on Jarvis offers small-batch, hand-made frozen custard and vegan ice cream. Made from a rich base of sugar, cream and egg yolks, the resulting ice cream is much denser and richer than its eggless counterpart. Behind Creamery X is business partners Bonnie and Melissa, who started conceptualizing the idea during the winter in quarantine. Their ice cream takes a total of 3 days to make, which involves 24 hours for the base to cure and develop flavours. Everything is made by hand, including all of their mix-ins. Expect unique flavours that are hard to find anywhere else, like Mom's Bourbon Butter Tart, Vegan Coconut Cream Pie, Carrot Cake, The Homer and one of their signature flavours, The Elvis, which is comprised of a fresh banana ice cream combined with a peanut butter swirl and a chocolate sourdough crunch.

The Screamery

The Screamery

This ice cream shop functions as a small-batch operation with limited-edition flavours available and is churned weekly for optimal freshness. There are only a few flavours available per week. This week features a Chocolate Caramel Mini Egg flavour (that is already sold out) and a Spiced Caramel Carrot Cake flavour. The Screamery also offers a Pint Club, where members receive 4 pints of different ice cream flavours the first Sunday of every month. Orders can be made through their website for curbside pickup at Queen and Gladstone.

Ice Creamonology

Ice Creamonology

This ice cream shop is helmed by chef Onur Yilmaz, who holds a bachelor's degree in gastronomy and culinary arts. Opened just a few months ago, the shop in Toronto's Harbourfront is serving handcrafted premium ice cream with flavours that use no artificial ingredients. You'll find flavours like Turkish coffee, mint & chocolate chip and pistachio.

Honey’s

Honey’s

Once a pop-up operation evolved into a permanent location this past winter that sells plant-based premium pints. Behind Honey's is Ashley Wittig, co-creator of Bunner's Bake Shop and devout ice cream lover, who was always searching for an equally delicious and creamy, vegan alternative. Every batch of ice cream is made-by-hand by Wittig herself and only uses high-quality and often organic ingredients. Located at 1448 Dundas St, you can pick up flavours like peanut butter & saltine crackers, earl grey and plain yogurt & blueberry jam.

On Third Thought Gelato

On Third Thought Gelato

This health-conscious gelato focuses on making a quality product free of nuts, gluten, dairy and eggs -- but they never compromise flavour. The small-batch operation ships in ingredients from Italy and uses only fresh and seasonal fruits. Their packaging is also eco-friendly, with completely biodegradable cups and spoons. Flavours include mojito, mango, pina colada, watermelon, apple pie and more and can be ordered online via their website for contactless delivery!

House Scoops

House Scoops

Started by ex-Buca chef Mathew Cribari, this small-batch gelato operation is slinging pints of old-school gelato made with high-quality Sheldon Creek Dairy from Alliston, Ontario. Cribari even takes requests for unique flavour ideas and so far, he has created options like Vietnamese iced coffee, caramelized banana, Hojicha green tea and lemon creamsicle. Orders can be placed via Instagram for Sunday deliveries.

Good Behaviour

Good Behaviour

Good Behaviour Ice Cream (GB) is a small-batch ice cream venture started by Michael Lam and Eric Chow, who worked together at renowned Italian restaurant Ascari. The two decided to pursue a lifelong passion for ice cream and were inspired to branch off independently as COVID continued to rage on. GB started to garner attention after they launched their pints in tandem with a meal offered by the popular pop-up Sunny's Chinese. Since the initial launch, the two are selling their pints online, with pre-orders opening Wednesday at 12 p.m., but quantities remain extremely limited. The plan is to eventually open their own brick-and-mortar location that will allow them to further experiment with new flavours and textural components. You'll find flavours like Honey Nut Cereal, Hong Kong Milk Tea, Torta Della Nonna, Strawberry Cheesecake and Afternoon Tea.

Ruru Baked

Ruru Baked

Ruru Baked was founded in 2017 by pastry chef Luanne Ronquillo as a small-scale ice cream brand that released weekly pint drops. Yet, it wasn't until the summer of 2020 that Ruru Baked really started to take off and to get your hands on one of the sought-after pints became quite a feat. Following months of resounding success, Ronquillo is in the process of opening up Ruru's first and very own storefront location in Bloordale Village.

Ronquillo's ice cream is unique compared to other options in the city as it is custard-based, meaning the base of the cream incorporates egg yolks, resulting in a richer, creamier and more complex flavour. The technique is a traditional one and common in France. Not only does Ronquillo focus on the base of her product but she puts emphasis on flavour ideation and using fresh or hand-made mix-ins. You'll find a wide array of flavours like Brown butter, Honey and Sage; Pandan; Banoffee Pie and Yuzu Raspberry Swirl, as well as a few vegan flavours.