The beet is the most intense of vegetables.

A while back I was strolling through the Durham Farmers’ Market and got gifted a bunch (well, quite a few bunches) of beets from Lil’ Farm. We decided to make a test batch, since we’d heard of other folks making beet ice cream:

We started with a Thomas Keller recipe, and churned it in our home ice cream maker. The first batch was delicious, so we decided to tweak the recipe a bit and make a batch to sell! Our beet ice cream is mostly beet, with just a bit of orange and some vanilla bean paste. We’re not trying to hide the flavor; as Tom Robbins said, “Beets are deadly serious.”

What’s the strangest ice cream flavor you’ve tasted or made? Did you like it? Let us know in the comments, and we’ll pick a random winner to receive a pint of the beet ice cream!

Slow week, busy week…

Hello, ice cream fans!

This is kind of a strange week for us. We’ll be out with the bus a little less than usual, so in that respect it’ll be kind of slow. Besides our regular Rigsbee appearances Wednesday & Sunday, we’ll be at Oval Park on Thursday night and the Farmers Market Saturday morning. If you foresee intense ice cream cravings, please plan accordingly.

Aside from the light scooping schedule, there’s a lot going on this week. For one thing, the final results of this year’s Best of the Triangle survey are being published in the Indy. Notifications went out a few weeks ago, so know that we’re a finalist or winner in the Frozen Dessert category, but until we won’t know which until Wednesday. Either way, we’re thrilled to have made it into the listings, since we weren’t even in business for a year when voting ended! And we’re excited to see the rest of the results after seeing the occasional finalist announcement on the internet here and there.

“Okay,” you’re saying, “but that’s no excuse for the light scooping schedule, is it?” And you’re right, we could just read the results on our phones while selling ice cream, but there’s more. We’re putting the finishing touches on the text and video for that Kickstarter campaign we mentioned, and we’ll be launching it any day now. We’ve also got lots of meetings coming up to compare spaces and work on business planning. 

We’re also taking a little time for friends and family this week! Mr. Parlour’s mom is coming to visit for a few days, and she’s bringing her mom, whom we haven’t seen in years! We obviously have to spend at least a little time with them. And some friends of ours are getting married on Saturday, so we’re taking that evening off to help celebrate. (Of course, that we’re not appearing at the Indy’s Best Of Party that night, but you should still go and check out lots of other Best Of winners and finalists!)

So we hope you’ll let us slide a little for this week’s relative lack of ice cream service. We assure you we’ll be picking up the slack for the rest of June. It’s almost summer, our employees need the hours, and you folks need delicious ice cream! See you out there soon!

One year later…

Happy birthday to us!

Today marks one year since our first day serving ice cream, at the Accent Hardwood parking lot, just north of the Durham Farmers Market:

The Parlour, opening day

We knew back then that we were making terrific ice cream, but we really had no idea if we’d sell any. Okay, we were encouraged by the fact that we had a couple hundred fans on Facebook and Twitter before we even opened, but who could say whether anyone else would find us? Read more

The South’s Best New Artisan Ice Creams

More Shout-outs, More Ice Cream

Our last blog post talked about how honored we are to connect with the local community by participating in nonprofit and charitable events. Of course, The Parlour a for-profit enterprise, and we’re also grateful for the relationships we’ve built with other local businesses.

It would take a lot of posts to discuss every kind of interaction with other businesses, so we’ll just talk about companies that provide a place to park. These companies support us in 2 ways: enabling us to serve to the public, or hiring us directly to cater an event.

Serving to the public

We have to begin with a hearty toast to Motorco and Fullsteam. Our regular appearances at these great Rigsbee Ave. spots have really gotten our name out there. We’ve also made occasional evening and weekend stops at Outsiders Art & Collectibles (where we’ll be this Friday!), Magpie Boutique, the Wells Fargo on Main, and Accent Hardwood.

This season: more daytime hours

In 2011 we didn’t serve much during the workweek. This season, we’ll be joining friends for lunch a few times a month, thanks to some Triangle businesses who graciously host lunch trucks. Here’s the lineup for now:

We love bringing our handmade treats to the folks working hard in the region’s office parks, so we appreciate the companies who’ve invited us out to scoop on their property!

Catering

Triangle businesses also gave us a big boost in our first year by hiring us to come treat their employees on premises. Some of these include the aforementioned Health Decisions and Insomniac Games, as well as Epic Games, SportsMedia Technologies, Panera Bread, iContact.com, and more. Folks seemed thrilled to have us out, and we’re looking forward to making some return visits this year!

Making more connections

We plan to add some more regular daytime appearances this year, so we’d like to hear about it if your company’s a good spot to be seen. And we always welcome the opportunity to provide the treats at catered events. Could your workplace use more great handmade ice cream? Get in touch!