Monday, July 13, 2015

Best Friend Friday No. 40: Franklin Fountain

On Saturday, July 11 Lauren and I treated ourselves to the best vegan ice cream in the world. Okay, so "in the world" may be a stretch as we haven't tried every single place that offers vegan ice cream (but hey, there's a bucket list item!), but this ice cream is by far the best vegan version we've had in our lives.

Back in May, we made a random visit to Franklin Fountain on our way home from a craft fair. Ever since then, we've both been dreaming of those delicious flavors. In the months that have passed since then, we hadn't come up with a good enough reason as to why we needed to go back. But, after discovering that the oldest continually-running candy shop is located right next door, we had to go back. My brother's birthday is coming up, and I honestly thought he would enjoy Philadelphia-made goodies. So on our way to the candy shop, we made a little pit stop and treated ourselves as well. If there was anything to celebrate, it would be that we had just finished our last double-digit training run for our upcoming marathon earlier that morning. If that's not a good reason to seek out ice cream, I don't know what is!

Halfway to Franklin Fountain, the subway came to a sudden halt as it became "out of service". Everyone was forced to exit the train and wait for the next one. We had no idea how long this would take, as the train we were formerly on hadn't moved, preventing a new train to come and pick us up. All was okay though, we thought. We would wait patiently for the next train without complaining, just happy knowing that we would soon find ourselves overjoyed with ice cream. However, after several minutes had passed, there was a terrible smell that neither of us could stand. It was making us both feel sick, so we decided to just exit the subway station and make the long trek to Franklin Fountain by foot. This meant walking fifteen blocks (after having run 12 miles). Despite the heat, it was all worth it.
Franklin Fountain has dozens of flavors- dairy, sugar-free, non-dairy, and vegan ones. Last time we stuck to the officially labeled "vegan" flavors as we didn't know exactly what hindered the "non-dairy" ones from being "vegan". This time Lauren asked, and we figured out that all of the "non-dairy" flavors are made with only vegan ingredients, however they aren't made in a vegan kitchen. Considering most times we go out to eat our food isn't prepared in a vegan kitchen, the "non-dairy" options immediately became additional vegan choices for us.

As far as the vegan options go, there seems to always be at least one sorbet option. This time they offered mango and raspberry sorbets. Their non-dairy flavors were chocolate and vanilla, while the vegan options were strawberry and blueberry. All of the non-dairy and vegan choices are coconut based. I giddily selected chocolate, and Lauren opted for a mix of vanilla and blueberry. As always, we tried each others selections, and we both decided that while we enjoyed all three flavors, our favorite by far was the chocolate. We agreed that it tasted exactly like a Wendy's frosty. It was that good!
Afterwards, we walked next door to Shane Confectionery to pick out a few birthday treats for Nate. We filled up a box of assorted chocolates for him, and also picked out a fancy Liberty Bell lollipop. The colorful salt water taffies looked so cheerful, so we had to get those for him as well. Then we couldn't stop eying the fudge, so I chose the oreo-topped one to give to Nate. Hopefully he likes them!

We had been eagerly awaiting this little expedition for a few weeks now. As soon as Marissa, Heather, and Leti arrive in November, this will be one of the first places we'll throw their way. I'm hoping they love this old-fashioned ice cream parlor just as much as we do, which will give us even more reasons to get our share of vegan ice cream!

And with our bellies stuffed with ice cream, Lauren and I are flying home to California this afternoon to spend four nice, relaxing weeks with our families...and to run the San Francisco Marathon!