When confronted with the choice of ice cream or candy bar, which do you choose? You don't really have to decide, as a dipped soft serve provides you the luxury of both. However, the increasingly difficult question has become, vanilla or… vanilla. For those serious chocolate lovers out there, it's not enough to coat the vanilla frozen treat in a wafer thin layer of paraffin-rich chocolate.
So we went to investigate, traversing Los Angeles in search of the chocolate-on-chocolate dipped cone. Unlike the study by the University of Exeter which concluded that taking a walk can curb the urge to consume chocolate, our walking contently resulted in the opposite: three options to satisfy your craving. Turn the page to find them in alphabetical order. And if we missed some, please leave recommendations in the comments. Like we need an excuse to eat more.
1. Connal's: If you're a native to Pasadena, it's fairly certain that you've been to the burger institution known as Connal's. Since 1958 this checkered diner has built a reputation around their burgers and subs. Lesser known is the fact that they serve dessert: a choice of vanilla, chocolate, or swirl dipped cones. For under $2 ($1.96 to be exact), you'll get a cone so generously dipped that it will benefit you to take a moment and prepare yourself for the thick pieces of chocolate that will probably break off, like chucks of glacier falling into the sea.
Connal's: 1505 E. Washington Blvd., Pasadena; (626) 794-5018.
2. Foster Freeze: Known as the first fast-food chain in California and reflected in their marketing slogan, “California's Original Soft Serve,” Foster Freeze contains a fair amount of nostalgia for those who grew up consuming their frozen confections. Only 9 standalone stores remain in all of Los Angeles County (the rest are within El Pollo Loco's, with limited options). One such store is located in Atwater Village, and it is there that you will find the uniquely shaped, bulbous chocolate soft serve surrounded by a crispy, wafer-thin shell. A small ($1.35) is all you need to taste simple pleasures at an equally reflective price.
Foster Freeze: 2760 Fletcher Drive, Los Angeles; (323) 663-2045.
3. Gill's Old Fashioned Ice Cream: Since 1937, Gill's has been satisfying frozen treat cravings from their candy striped stand at the original Farmer's Market on Fairfax. If you're unsure whether you've reached the correct stall, just look for the hand-painted chocolate dip signs. They're quite proud of their chocolate dip ($4.00), which has a crunchy, medium-thickness coating and an intensely cocoa-heavy soft serve produced from an all natural, no rBST Alta Dena Dairy mix.
Gill's Old Fashioned Ice Cream: 6333 West 3rd St., Los Angeles; (323) 936-7966.