Yesterday evening around 8pm, Cindy and Nikki and I went to the Bruster's Ice Cream on Holcomb Bridge and we ran into this family, two DADs and six children and they were happy.
I remember them getting out of their cars and coming up to the line, the children almost in a trance. They had to decide what flavor to order and if the ice cream vessel would be cup or cone. The were six children, beautiful, well behaved, you couldn't help but notice them. As we enjoyed our ice cream I saw them all sitting right across from us with their big smiles and I asked one of the DAD's if I could take their photo. Certainly the photo quality is not good, at the same time the moment and all that it brings to my heart is wonderful.
I don't eat ice cream all the time, but on a hot, humid, July Atlanta evening, (after fish tacos on Buford at El Señor Taco), the decision was unanimous to drive to Bruster's. Everyone at Bruster's was happy. The couple in front of us in the line sharing and recommending their favorite flavors, everyone lamenting that Bruster's was out of Almond Joy. The demographics were all represented, adults, children, grandparents, families, friends, young couples on dates, everyone with a good reason to be there to enjoy the cold tasty treats.
As I sat across the six children I was taken back to my earliest memories of ice cream in Panama, at Estrella Azul and at the Dairy Queen.
Estrella Azul is a large company in Panama that makes dairy products. They had an location somewhere close to the "then Canal Zone", my MOM would drive to this place and buy ice cream in large gallon containers. I remember we always had to go there last, buy the ice cream and hurry home so it would not melt too much. The containers were made of heavy cardboard material. I remember the vanilla tasting perfect ! My favorite combination when I got home, a scoop of ice cream and warm hot fudge. Going to the Estrella Azul location to buy ice cream was a treat. We were always happy to go along when the errands included a stop for hellos We were like honorary guards of this tasty treat as it made its way to our home in La Cresta.
We left Panama in 1970 before any fast food franchises came to the tiny republic; we did have a Dairy Queen on Via Espana and there I came to know the Brown Derby.
It was not my favorite because I did not like the texture of the cone. I remember when we ordered at the window at the DQ, I would watch the two step process of the ice cream being swirled onto the cone and then the strategic dip into the chocolate for the "derby" effect. It was like watching a magic trick, at this time I was 10 and 11 years old. I have not had a Brown Derby in years. There is a DQ up the road on 141, I may have to stop in there one day before the summer is over.
A few blog posts ago I shared the story of Talenti, my new found favorite ice cream. Actually Talenti is a brand of gelato ice cream, they have plant in Marietta, GA. If you have not tried the Sea Salt Caramel, you must !
I hope you are enjoying your summer.