Skip to main content

The Manual may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

8 of the Coolest Ice Cream Parlors in the World

Calling it ice cream is cute, but these sorbet, gelato, and nitrogen laboratories around the world are turning simple soft serve into flavorful masterpieces. Not only are the scoops wild, but the cones are larger than life and the shops are designed like modern galleries.

Hope you don’t have a sweet tooth – we recommend having a box of Daiya plant-based dessert bars on hand because you will need ice cream after this.

Prossima Fermata

Milan, Italy

Prossima Fermata
Image used with permission by copyright holder

The clean, quaint ice cream laboratory that is Prossima Fermata combines a parlor sales space with a scientific ice cream work area. Designed around three basic materials: linoleum, stone, and wood, this minimalist ice cream shop is obsessed with fresh, delicious flavors based around seasonal fruit. Its cool desserts include fig granita, blood orange sorbet, and tiramisu gelato.

Ice Scream

New York City, New York

Ice Scream
Image used with permission by copyright holder

You scream, we all scream for this liquid nitrogen ice cream bar that does away with freezer space and wait time, since customers get freshly frozen scoops on the double. Freezing at -321 degrees, the ice cream has less crystals and air, meaning the taste is dense and creamy. Ice Scream isn’t complete without a mess of toppings, from caramel de leche to fluffy whipped cream. Dine in because the 80s interior design by Asthetique is, like, totally bitchin’.

Sweet Salvation

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Sweet Salvation
Image used with permission by copyright holder

The boldest minds of history (and ice cream creation) rely on experimentation. Toronto-born and Dubai-based, Sweet Salvation is a mind-bending ice cream shop serving tall swirls of vanilla or chocolate ice cream topped with icing, cake crumbles, sauce, or cotton candy. Yes, these ice cream cones are our saviors. Pair with a cold brew and enjoy on the sunlit turquoise barstool.

Glam Air

Taiwan

Glam Air
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Hidden in the basement of a shopping mall in Taipei is the playful ice cream counter Glam Air. Famous for making cups of overflowing cotton candy atop soft serve, Glam Air shapes cute Chinese creatures out of cotton candy for a dessert that earns a spot on your Instagram … even if you hate food pics. (Want some pro tips for your photos?)

Milk Train

London, England

Milk Train
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Candy floss, popcorn, and (duh) ice cream are a few of the funky sweets invented at London’s Milk Train. A common cone here includes a cloud of cotton candy surrounding a mountain of soft serve and sprinkled with wild candies. Milk Train’s modern Covent Garden storefront is designed to look like a train station, and their ice cream creations are almost (almost) too good to eat.

Soft Touch

Medellín, Colombia

Soft Touch
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Bring your sweet tooth to Colombia’s Soft Touch ice cream shop. Flushed with bright colors, the popular salon welcomes you in with pink neon signs and pastel wire chairs — a modern and lively space designed by Plasma Nodo — before absolutely demolishing your sugar cravings. Try an ice cream sandwich, shake, sundae, or fudge-infused brownie topped with ice cream. Drool over their Instagram … but only if you’re prepared to jump on a flight.

CoolN2

Toronto, Canada

CoolN2
Image used with permission by copyright holder

When you see an ice cream stabbed with a flavor syringe, you know that ice cream is legit. CoolN2 is a Toronto-based nitrogen ice cream lab with one simple counter and an easily identifiable tiger sign beckoning us to a willful brain freeze. The flavors are wildly unique and made from scratch (cream, fresh fruit, sugar, nitrogen, BOOM.) There’s almost always a line but it’s so worth it. They also serve dragon breath.

Ice & Vice

New York City, New York

Ice & Vice
Ice & Vice

If your biggest weakness is ice cream, embrace your vice with bougie flare in the Lower East Side ice cream parlor Ice & Vice. Largely inspired by Mexican flavors and spins, opt for an ice cream taco instead of a cone, and satiate your palate with scoops of ghost peppers, Vietnamese coffee, prickly pear, or cheddar and peach ice cream. Want a slice of pie thrown on top? Cool with them. Calling it ice cream is an understatement.

Editors' Recommendations

Jahla Seppanen
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Born and raised off-the-grid in New Mexico, Jahla Seppanen is currently a sports, fitness, spirits, and culture writer in…
How to make Vietnamese pho, a perfect soup for any time of the year
A guide to making your own pho at home
Bowl of Vietnamese Pho with rice noodles, mung beans, cilantro, spring onions and limes

A steaming bowl of rich beef broth brimming with noodles and fragrant herbs, pho is widely considered the most famous dish of Vietnam. Thanks to a widespread Vietnamese diaspora, pho has become international, enjoyed by diners everywhere from California to Germany. You can enjoy pho any time of the year.

Beef pho 
(Recipe by Chef Greg Gugunin, formerly of Pho 66 in New York City)
Ingredients:
For the broth

Read more
How to make the finest Tom Collins cocktail, according to experts
Take notes so you can add these cocktail recipes to your home bar repertoire
Fresh home made Tom Collins cocktails with lemon

For a drink that has its own glass, you'd think the Tom Collins cocktail would be even more popular. It's a classic, without a shadow of a doubt, but many imbibers don't exactly know how to whip one up, let alone perfect it.

The Tom Collins is a relatively simple drink. That said, you still need to do it right. All the little things become that much more important, from effervescence and temperature to the freshness of the citrus. Assemble it poorly, and the drink is just a grown-up lemonade. Prepare it professionally, and you have one of the most refreshing cocktails ever devised in your hand.

Read more
The 14 best coffee beans to buy in 2024, chosen by experts
A warm cup of coffee and spoon on a saucer with coffee beans

We all have our favorite type of coffee. Whether you prefer a dark roast made from coarse grounds and a French press or something less strong and dark via your reliable Mr. Coffee, a cup of Joe is the best way to start your day. And like everything in life, there’s always room for improvement. Whether it’s owning a high-end coffeemaker or buying the right milk or milk frother, the ideal method for making the perfect cup of coffee is easier than you think. In addition to tasting great and kick-starting your day, coffee also promotes liver health and reduces your risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

While we’re all for coffee clubs and coffee subscription services, there will come a time when you need to be in charge of your coffee beans. We’ve done our research to bring you our comprehensive list of the best coffee beans that will surely please your palate and elevate your mornings. A word of advice: Coffee beans do expire, so don’t let them sit for too long in the kitchen. Oh, and keep your coffee pot clean, it'll lead to a better-tasting cup.

Read more