Just in time for what's shaping up to be an insanely hot summer in Los Angeles, McConnell's ice cream shop is opening in Grand Central Market next month, in July. Yes, that's next month already. The 70-year-old Santa Barbara ice cream shop is still family-owned: A third generation of the family, Santa Barbara chef Eva Ein and her husband, winemaker Michael Palmer, took over the business in 2012.
McConnell's new downtown scoop shop will feature 16 flavors, including old favorites such as double peanut butter chip. And, given the company's penchant for showcasing area produce, it will have lots of seasonal flavors, so look for Eureka lemon and marionberries; Oaxacan chocolate; olive oil and salted roasted almonds; and milk chocolate and raspberry jam. Because we're all going to need a lot of ice cream in what's probably going to be a three-month-long heatwave.]
McConnell's was founded at Santa Barbara's Old Dairy in 1949. In the almost three-quarters of a century since, they've been making ice cream from local ingredients, using something called a hybrid French Pot churning process. (Maybe they can swap trade secrets with the coffee folks at G&B.) This will be McConnell's first ice cream shop outside the Central Coast.
McConnell's is the latest in a string of businesses to come to Grand Central Market, which has been a downtown shopping hub for almost 100 years. In recent months, Wexler's Deli, Belcampo Meat Co., DTLA Cheese, Berlin Currywurst and other vendors have joined such longtime favorites as Sarita's Pupuseria, China Cafe and Tacos Tumbras a Tomas.