Ice Cream -- Hold the Dairy

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If you thought this was conventional gelato, you'd be wrong

New to the East Village: an all vegan "ice cream" shop. The display mimics, not a Coldstone or a Baskin-Robbins, but one of the gelato shops that have popped up over the last couple of years.

The place is called Stogo, and is the brainchild of Malcolm Stogo of ice cream impresarios Malcolm Stogo Associates, which usually has no problem with dairy products in ice cream. The product is based on either soy derivatives or coconut milk, and each tub is decorated, Italian-style, with squiggles of chocolate, scatters of nuts, or tidbits of fruit to telegraph the flavor in the tub.

 

Could the product be mistaken for ice cream by a blindfolded taster? In a few cases, the answer would be yes. Flavors run from the conventional (chocolate, strawberry, peach) to the truly weird (pomegranate chocolate chip, vanilla goji berry crunch). We particularly liked the soft serve not featured in the display case, which had a creamy texture and a zippy flavor. The berry soft serve knocked us out, and the chocolate wasn't bad, either. There's a cavalcade of toppings, too, including goji berries, dark chocolate chips, almonds, tiny marshmallows, and, yes, rainbow sprinkles.

 

Stogo also sells gluten-free cupcakes, raw chocolates, and fair-trade coffee -- without cream, of course. 159 Second Avenue (entrance on 10th Street), 212-677-2301

 

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