Where to get the best ice cream in San Francisco

When I visited San Francisco, I ate a lot of ice cream. One day, ice cream was dinner. There are a lot of great ice cream shops in San Francisco, and here’s my rundown of where to get the best ice cream in the San Francisco area. If you have others to suggest, let me know in the comments!

Humphry Slocombe

Address: 1 Sausalito – San Francisco Ferry Bldg, San Francisco, CA 94111, USA (find it on Google Maps)
Hours: Open every day · 11AM–9:30PM EXCEPT Saturday · 8AM–9:30PM
Phone: (415) 550-6971
Find more information on Facebook or on their website.

I visited Humphrey Slocombe several times during my 4 day stay in San Francisco. I couldn’t get enough of their Secret Breakfast flavour, a play on breakfast for adults: a bourbon ice cream base with corn flakes mixed in. Seriously good stuff. Kinda makes you want to add bourbon to your breakfast, but perhaps that would end badly… best to consume the ice cream instead. The other flavour I adored was Vietnamese coffee made with Blue Bottle coffee. This flavour really captures that creamy, sweet flavour of this addictive coffee and sweetened condensed milk drink. By the way, they have an ice cream recipe book available on Amazon. It’s called the Humphry Slocombe Ice Cream Book and even includes the recipe for the Secret Breakfast ice cream. Tempting, isn’t it? Another cookbook to add to the collection, if you ask me…

Mr. and Mrs. Miscellaneous

Address: 699 22nd St, San Francisco, CA 94107, USA
Hours: Open Tuesday to Sunday · 11:30AM–6PM
Phone: (415) 970-0750
For more information, visit Mr. and Mrs. Miscellaneous on Facebook.

I think Mr. and Mrs. Miscellaneous served the most expensive ice cream I tried in San Francisco. If I remember correctly, it came out to something like 10 Canadian dollars for 2 scoops on a sugar cone with the exchange rate… that really seemed like a ridiculous price to pay for ice cream. It also took us around 40 minutes to commute from downtown San Francisco—that’s a lot of travelling for an ice cream cone. Still, I went for it. YOLO! I regret nothing. Totally worth the money and the time. I sampled a lot of the flavours and ended up going for a scoop of sweet cream ice cream on the bottom and a scoop of the Thai tea ice cream on the top. The sweet cream had a deeply satisfying dairy flavour, which was quite impressive for something that sounds so simple. I paired the Thai tea flavour with it because I love tea and this tea ice cream has a VERY STRONG tea flavour with that astringency that those of us who enjoy a strong cuppa love. I don’t think I’ve ever had a better tea-flavoured ice cream than this, bold and impressive. And since I love real, strong tea, Mr. and Mrs. Miscellaneous really hit the spot.

Bi-rite Creamery

Address: 3692 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110, USA
Hours: Open every day · 11AM–10PM
Phone: (415) 626-5600
For more information, find Bi-rite Creamery on Facebook or visit their website

I visited Bi-rite Creamery years ago and I had their hard ice cream. It was a long time ago, like maybe in 2010. I remember loving it, but I have no recollection of the flavours I tried, and not even a photo to prove it. This time, when I visited Bi-Rite Creamery, the lineup for the hard ice cream was too long. You know I love ice cream, but if I have to line up for well over an hour to get my fix, I lose interest. On the plus side, the Bi-rite Creamery soft serve window was open and had almost no line. Problem solved! I am always skeptical when I order soft serve because soft serve can be pretty bad at some places, overly sweet, oddly fluffy, just not good. Bi-rite Creamery serves quality soft serve. On the day I visited, the softer serve flavour was caramel & vanilla swirl. I had them dip it in sprinkles (because sprinkles). Bi-rite Creamery also has a recipe book dedicated to ice cream, in case you can’t make it to the shop (or if the line is too long, like in my case): Sweet Cream and Sugar Cones: 90 Recipes for Making Your Own Ice Cream and Frozen Treats from Bi-Rite Creamery (available on Amazon).

Did I miss your favourite ice cream parlour in San Francisco? Let me know in the comments what you think is the best ice cream in SFO!

P.S. The Museum of Ice Cream will be heading to San Francisco in the fall of 2017! If you want to take a sprinkle bath (don’t we all?), head over to Eater SF for the scoop and check out the Museum of Ice Cream website to get all the official details!

Please note that the hours of operations of these ice cream shops are subject to change. Check their websites or Facebook pages to keep up-to-date!

Top 3 ice cream shops in San Francisco - here's a rundown of the best ice cream in San Francisco

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