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19 Unmissable 'Try Before You Die' Gelato, Ice Cream and Shaved Ice Spots in Vancouver

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Sure, ice cream is good year-round, but it tastes extra good when the sun shines. We asked by Eagranie Yuh, author of The Chocolate Tasting Kit, to put together an ultimate guide to where to get the best in the city.
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Vancouver in summer is glorious. Peaceful mornings bleed into patio afternoons that turn into endless nights of fiery skies. And what better accompaniment to all of these things than ice cream? From neighbourhood classics to new kids on the block, we present—in no particular order—the Vancouver ice cream map. Got a suggestion for a spot you think deserves to be added? Drop us a line or leave a comment.


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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Temper Chocolate & Pastry

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If you haven’t been to Dundarave Village’s Temper Pastry, here’s one more reason to cross the bridge: the recent launch of house-made ice cream bars. Choose from vanilla in chocolate, chocolate in chocolate, or mint in chocolate. Pssst: they’re licensed.

Gelarmony

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If you do nothing else this summer, please do this: sit on a log in English Bay and watch a sunset while pondering a scoop of gelato from Gelarmony. Maybe two.

Thierry Chocolaterie Patisserie

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If you find it hard to make decisions, stay far away from Thierry, where each cake looks more delicious than the next, the cookies beckon from cute glass jars, and a rainbow of macarons sits next to a serious spread of chocolates. Adding to your quandary: ice creams and sorbets by the scoop and by the pint.

Bel Café

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The corner of Georgia and Howe just got a bit cooler. David Hawksworth’s Bel Café is taking popsicles and ice creams to the next level. Of course they’ll be seasonal. Of course they’ll be made with local ingredients. And they’ll be so beautiful, you will hesitate for just. one. moment. before devouring the whole thing.

Bella Gelateria

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It’s a recipe for success: the best quality ingredients, flavours inspired by Vancouver’s diverse culinary influences, executed by a meticulously driven gelato maestro. See where it all started in Coal Harbour—just steps away from stunning views of the North Shore.

Pazzo Chow

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Brown Paper Packages is rightly famous for its ice cream sandwiches. You can get BPP’s ice cream sandwiches, as well as ice creams by the scoop and pint, at super-cute Pazzo Chow in Chinatown. (And if you can get that song out of your head after reading this, you deserve a prize.)

BETA5 Chocolates

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As if you need another reason to go to Beta5, this purveyor of chocolates, cream puffs and vienoisseries has unleashed ice cream sandwiches on Vancouver. Recent flavours include strawberry cheesecake, vanilla bean (between macarons, ergo gluten-free), and mint chocolate chip.

La Casa Gelato

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If you can put it in ice cream, the crazy kids at La Casa Gelato have done it. They may be famous for their wackier flavours (durian ice cream, anyone?) but the truth is, they do the standards well. Grab a scoop and join the happy hordes outside, leaning against the shop’s bright pink wall.

Gelateria Dolce Amore

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What would Little Italy be without a proper gelateria? Dolce Amore supplies next-door Merchant’s Oyster Bar with their standout olive oil ice cream, and there are plenty of other options to tempt you, including ice cream sandwiches and hazelnut-crusted, chocolate-dipped ice cream bars.

Glenburn Soda Fountain & Confectionery

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Glenburn Soda Fountain & Confectionery looks like it’s straight out of the ‘50s, and it’s the real deal: locally-made ice cream, house-made syrups made with local products whenever possible, and run by two of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. Say hi to Ron and Roberta as you slurp your soda.

Rocky Point Ice Cream

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It’s a familiar story: fresh dairy from happy cows, local and seasonal ingredients, hand-crafted ice cream. But oh, what a good story it is. Rocky Point Ice Cream makes a trip to the suburbs worth the visit (and its proximity to Pajo’s Fish & Chips is a happy coincidence).

Tre Galli Gelato Caffè

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The River Market at New Westminster Quay is a food-lover’s paradise, and how better to cap off a day of grazing than with a scoop of gelato? If it’s a nice day, grab a scoop from Tre Galli and head to the boardwalk to inspect the giant toy soldier, peer into the community garden plots, or check out people and their dogs.

Avalon Dairy & Deli

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Avalon Dairy is already known for having the city’s best milk (and eggs, and butter, and, and, and…) so why not also ice cream? You won’t find any artificial ingredients here—that tinge of yellow in the French Vanilla comes from turmeric, not Yellow Dye No. 5. And if you needed one more reason: it’s all certified organic from happy cows.

Timothy's Frozen Yogurt

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Since 1989, Timothy’s has been tempting people stuffed with fish and chips to make just a little more room—for frozen yogurt, ice cream and sorbet. And it’s safe to say that most people do. Grab a scoop and grab a seat. It’s people-watching at its finest. Word to the wise - it's cash only so visit the ATM to avoid disappointment.

Frappe Bliss

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OK, so not strictly ice ream or gelato, but so, so good. For the uninitiated, Taiwanese shaved ice is exactly what it sounds like: a frozen block of flavoured ice milk that is shaved into feathery, delicate shards. Then you put toppings on it: tapioca pearls, ice cream, fruit, what have you. People who love it, love it.

Butter Baked Goods Ltd

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Already known for the best baking outside your grandmother’s kitchen, Butter Baked Café has upped the ante this summer. One: they’re making ice cream, from scratch and with love. Two: they’re putting said ice cream in between two of their larger-than-life cookies. Available by the pint or by the sandwich, this is going to be epic.

Earnest Ice Cream

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On a nondescript block of Fraser Street, an ice cream revolution is happening. Each night, people queue around the block for their hit of Earnest Ice Cream. Ben Ernst and Erica Bernardi are keeping up their end of the bargain with staples like Tahitian Vanilla and Whiskey Hazelnut—and plenty of seasonal options to boot.

Rain or Shine Ice Cream

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At Rain or Shine Ice Cream, owners Josie Fenton and Blair Casey do almost everything in-house. (The one exception is the gluten-free cone.) Fenton loves the peanut butter ice cream; Casey’s mad for seasonal craft beer experiments. Stop by for ice cream tacos on Taco Tuesdays. Pro tip: Grab a pint from the freezer in front and skip the line.

Bella Yaletown

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Not open yet - but impossible to not mention. With his new digs in Yaletown, Bella’s James Coleridge is giving the city twice the opportunity to taste his award-winning gelato. He’s added wood-fired pizza and liquor to the menu, not to mention…gelato martinis?

Temper Chocolate & Pastry

If you haven’t been to Dundarave Village’s Temper Pastry, here’s one more reason to cross the bridge: the recent launch of house-made ice cream bars. Choose from vanilla in chocolate, chocolate in chocolate, or mint in chocolate. Pssst: they’re licensed.

Gelarmony

If you do nothing else this summer, please do this: sit on a log in English Bay and watch a sunset while pondering a scoop of gelato from Gelarmony. Maybe two.

Thierry Chocolaterie Patisserie

If you find it hard to make decisions, stay far away from Thierry, where each cake looks more delicious than the next, the cookies beckon from cute glass jars, and a rainbow of macarons sits next to a serious spread of chocolates. Adding to your quandary: ice creams and sorbets by the scoop and by the pint.

Bel Café

The corner of Georgia and Howe just got a bit cooler. David Hawksworth’s Bel Café is taking popsicles and ice creams to the next level. Of course they’ll be seasonal. Of course they’ll be made with local ingredients. And they’ll be so beautiful, you will hesitate for just. one. moment. before devouring the whole thing.

Bella Gelateria

It’s a recipe for success: the best quality ingredients, flavours inspired by Vancouver’s diverse culinary influences, executed by a meticulously driven gelato maestro. See where it all started in Coal Harbour—just steps away from stunning views of the North Shore.

Pazzo Chow

Brown Paper Packages is rightly famous for its ice cream sandwiches. You can get BPP’s ice cream sandwiches, as well as ice creams by the scoop and pint, at super-cute Pazzo Chow in Chinatown. (And if you can get that song out of your head after reading this, you deserve a prize.)

BETA5 Chocolates

As if you need another reason to go to Beta5, this purveyor of chocolates, cream puffs and vienoisseries has unleashed ice cream sandwiches on Vancouver. Recent flavours include strawberry cheesecake, vanilla bean (between macarons, ergo gluten-free), and mint chocolate chip.

La Casa Gelato

If you can put it in ice cream, the crazy kids at La Casa Gelato have done it. They may be famous for their wackier flavours (durian ice cream, anyone?) but the truth is, they do the standards well. Grab a scoop and join the happy hordes outside, leaning against the shop’s bright pink wall.

Gelateria Dolce Amore

What would Little Italy be without a proper gelateria? Dolce Amore supplies next-door Merchant’s Oyster Bar with their standout olive oil ice cream, and there are plenty of other options to tempt you, including ice cream sandwiches and hazelnut-crusted, chocolate-dipped ice cream bars.

Glenburn Soda Fountain & Confectionery

Glenburn Soda Fountain & Confectionery looks like it’s straight out of the ‘50s, and it’s the real deal: locally-made ice cream, house-made syrups made with local products whenever possible, and run by two of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. Say hi to Ron and Roberta as you slurp your soda.

Rocky Point Ice Cream

It’s a familiar story: fresh dairy from happy cows, local and seasonal ingredients, hand-crafted ice cream. But oh, what a good story it is. Rocky Point Ice Cream makes a trip to the suburbs worth the visit (and its proximity to Pajo’s Fish & Chips is a happy coincidence).

Tre Galli Gelato Caffè

The River Market at New Westminster Quay is a food-lover’s paradise, and how better to cap off a day of grazing than with a scoop of gelato? If it’s a nice day, grab a scoop from Tre Galli and head to the boardwalk to inspect the giant toy soldier, peer into the community garden plots, or check out people and their dogs.

Avalon Dairy & Deli

Avalon Dairy is already known for having the city’s best milk (and eggs, and butter, and, and, and…) so why not also ice cream? You won’t find any artificial ingredients here—that tinge of yellow in the French Vanilla comes from turmeric, not Yellow Dye No. 5. And if you needed one more reason: it’s all certified organic from happy cows.

Timothy's Frozen Yogurt