Some of the most unusual ice cream flavors in L.A. can be found at a small, strip-mall shop located behind a Reseda 7-Eleven. Among the more interesting ones are lucuma, a Peruvian fruit whose taste is often likened to sweet potato; membrillo (quince); guanabana, a large, white-fleshed fruit also known as soursop; queso, with chunks of real cheese; and leche quemada, a caramelized milk candy popular in Mexico. Those flavors alone would set La Reyna de Michoacán apart from other places, but there's something else that makes it truly one-of-a-kind — it's kosher! Chilean-Jewish owner Rafael Algaze has been making homemade ice cream for seven years. After being asked repeatedly when he was going to make a kosher version, he set about adapting popular Mexican, Central and South American flavors to kosher standards. Algaze also makes nondairy sorbets and more common flavors such as coffee and cookies and cream, all with natural ingredients and real fruit. The phrase “only in L.A.” is kind of a cliché, but it fits perfectly here.
Credit: Jim Thurman