In a city where fancy desserts can be found at nearly every restaurant, there's something so refreshing about a high-quality scoop of the old-fashioned good stuff: ice cream. Even in the cold tundra of winter, there's comfort and nostalgia to be found in any cone or a cup. And while it'd be nearly impossible to dream up a more perfect treat, that doesn't mean that there isn't any variation in what you can find dotted along New York's streets.
Some proprietors listed below, such as Big Gay Ice Cream Truck and Van Leeuwen, got their starts out of the back of a truck before cashing in enough rabid fans to open brick-and-mortar shops.
Others, like Ralph's Italian Ices in Staten Island, have called the Big Apple home for almost a century. And still others have cropped up online and in Brooklyn's suburbs, bringing exciting, modern flavors to an industry that dates back to second century B.C.
Where other desserts (cough, Baked Alaska, cough) have trended and gone, ice cream is an old standby. A steady rock. An always there for you friend, whether you're happy, sad or just in the mood for a cool, creamy lick.
Below, we take you on a sugary journey of the ten best ice cream shops in New York City.