Ice cream‘s origins are known to reach back as far as the second century B.C., although no specific date of origin or inventor has been undisputably credited with its discovery. We know that Alexander the Great enjoyed snow and ice flavored with honey and nectar.
Over a thousand years later, Marco Polo returned to Italy from the Far East with a recipe that closely resembled what is now called sherbet. Historians estimate that this recipe evolved into ice cream sometime in the 16th century. “Cream Ice,” as it was called, appeared regularly at the table of Charles I during the 17th century.
France was introduced to similar frozen desserts in 1553 by the Italian Catherine de Medici when she became the wife of Henry II of France. It wasn’t until 1660 that ice cream was made available to the general public. The Sicilian Procopio introduced a recipe blending milk, cream, butter, and eggs at Café Procope, the first café in Paris.
Today, ice cream is known the world over. With numerous flavors and types to choose from, ice cream has always been the go-to solution for any occasion. With an ice cream date or after-work ice cream treat to commiserate about the boss, or the parent-child bonding over favorite stories and favorite flavors, the ice cream has always been the bridge. This melty, smooth, rich delight is loved by all, and if anyone says otherwise, they are just lying. Hence, when New York decided to have a permanent museum dedicated to the creamy treat, no name sounded better than the Museum of Ice Cream.
The Museum of Ice Cream
Two words that completely come from two walks of life are merged in a single brand name. The museum, a place to visit the past; ice cream, a treat that makes the present and future so much sweeter. When both these meet, what do you get? A place where ice cream’s history is displayed? Tips and techniques of ancient ice cream making? Or a Willy Wonka-esque experience? It is more of the latter with an interactive way to keep people engaged and enjoy themselves — rather like a playground.
Started in the Meatpacking District in 2016, founders Bunn and Vora wanted to create a space for everyone where the love of ice cream would forge friendships. Their focus on experience made the Museum of Ice Cream an instant hit, with popups across various other cities. This also encouraged other such businesses to curate an immersive space. Such is their success that many companies sell their brand of ice cream flavors and they even have launched a makeup line, sold by Sephora. This success has also led the founders to set up a permanent store in New York.
A day at the museum
Once you have brought your ticket, you are allowed entrance to the museum and though the ticket is priced high, the ice cream scoops and other delights that await you inside are very much worth it. Upon entering, you are required to create an ice-cream-inspired name for yourself. Want inspiration? Look at the wall where celebrities have shared their names. Once your ice cream name is decided, your tour begins.
The first part takes you through a room where ice cream scoops are presented to you on a cherry-topped plate and while you enjoy the flavor, a singer serenades you with a funky song while sporting a cone crown. This sets the tone of the tour — a positive and sweet beginning that makes the upcoming parts even sweeter.
Once inside, you can choose from the 13 installations that are guaranteed to give you really memorable moments and a great Instagram aesthetic. Co-founder Vora emphasizes the point that all installations — and the future ones too — are based on creativity from the team’s side and suggestions from the visitors. He says that the team is committed to delivering the guest’s demands. Highlighting a few of the installations — a three-story slide, queen beehive, and hall with giant scoops — Vora also states that they have “the biggest sprinkle pool to date,” which is their main attraction and the best part of the visit. The museum also houses retails outlets and a café for catering to other food needs and purchase urges.
As a parent, if you are out with your kid and want to have some alone time, do check out the adults-only section of the pool to mingle with other adults. New York is all set to be embraced in the magic of ice cream. You too can get your tickets and plan a great day with your loved ones or just take yourself out on a date amidst colorful installations and treats.