Where to Get the Best Ice Cream in San Francisco
Nothing quite says summer like warm evenings with an ice cream cone in hand. Luckily, in San Francisco, we boast some of the best parlors in the nation—from quaint mom-and-pop spots to start ups gone global. So, whether you’re strolling around the Embarcadero in search of your favorite flavor or exploring San Francisco for the absolute cream of the crop, stick to our guide to find the best treats in the city.
One of San Francisco’s most sought-after ice cream shops, Humphry Slocombe, sits right on Harrison Street in the Mission. The parlor serves up an array of funky flavors and concoctions that both tourists and locals alike often make the trip for. From the Elvis sundae with banana ice cream and bacon peanut brittle to their Secret Breakfast flavor with bourbon and cornflakes, each and every scoop will blow your taste buds away.
For gelato enthusiasts, Coletta in SoMa is a timeless go-to spot. Located less than half a mile from The Harrison, Coletta makes fresh, handcrafted, artisanal gelato daily, featuring unique flavors like chai and California pistachio with Maldon sea salt, as well as the age-old Italian favorites including chocolate hazelnut and stracciatella. Whether you want to go for an evening stroll or pop out of the office for a midday break, Coletta will always satisfy your sweet tooth.
The Ice Cream Bar Soda Fountain
For an old-school parlor experience, look no further than The Ice Cream Bar Soda Fountain. Located in Cole Valley, this retro soda fountain is a true blast from the past with some of the city’s most delicious ice cream, to boot. The spot is an adult favorite, too, serving boozy milkshakes—known as remedies—like the PX Pie with pumpkin ice cream and beer and Dublin Honey with caramelized honey ice cream, Guinness stout and chocolate syrup.
If you’re looking for ice cream with a twist, Steep Creamery in SoMa is rolling up indulgent flavors in the trendiest way possible. Their Thai-style ice cream is poured in thin layers, frozen in metal sheet pans and shaved into roll-shaped scoops that are as artistic as they are delicious. Be sure to try their cookie crush flavor or mix it up with a MyThai, featuring Thai iced tea-flavored ice cream with boba and housemade coconut pudding.