Caribbean Ice Cream

14 Jan

Brenda here:

Yes, I know, it’s been a while since we’ve posted. Holidays, traveling, catching up from traveling, what can I say? But I do want to report in on two places we discovered during our escape from the frozen north. On St. Maarten we found not one, but two gelaterias, one within walking distance of our condo! The big GELATERIA sign predictably caught our eye as we drove past, so we made a point of visiting. A sign on the side read “Where’s Ivan?” so we’re assuming that’s the actual name of the place, though we won’t swear to it. We sampled our standard chocolate as well as the raspberry ice. (Hey, it was in the eighties in St Maarten!) The raspberry was fruity and refreshing, but we can’t say the chocolate was up to European standards. Still, it beat the heck out of most store-bought ice cream, so we’re not complaining!

The other place we found was on the boardwalk (well, I guess it’s not really a BOARDwalk, but a nice, wide walkway along the beach) in Phillipsburg, also on the Dutch side of the island, but with much stronger French influence. In case you don’t know, St Martin/Maarten is only 37 square miles, but is two separate countries, French and Dutch. It’s hard to tell when you go from one to the other–no border crossings or anything like that–but they use European power outlets and take euro on the French side, while they use our American 110 outlets on the Dutch side and theoretically take the Florin, though we never saw any currency but dollars.

Anyway, where was I? Oh, yes, ice cream! Vanille & Chocolat Ice Cream Parlor was very French and both the chocolate (dark chocolate!) and the chocolate orange were definitely up to European standards. Excellent, and a wonderful way to take a little break from the sun. Highly recommended.

Brenda & Beth in St Maarten


Posted by on January 14, 2008 in caribbean, europe, france, gelato, ice cream, travel


Tags: , , ,

5 responses to “Caribbean Ice Cream

  1. Barbara

    January 15, 2008 at 5:40 pm

    just found your website by chance.
    very nice.
    I live on SXM.
    If you are an ice cream lover, have you discovered Etna ice cream that is sold here?
    It is to die for.
    it is made here and is sold in all the supermarkets.
    It is unbelievably creamy and tasty!

  2. Brenda

    January 15, 2008 at 7:01 pm

    Oh, Barbara, no, we didn’t discover Etna while we were there! We were only there for a week, but we enjoyed it so much I’m sure we’ll manage to go back. And we’ll definitely try the Etna next time! Thanks for the recommendation!

  3. Dimitri

    February 7, 2008 at 10:35 am

    Hi Brenda, great that you visited our little island St. Maarten. I just want to comment that indeed the name of the place is “Where’s Ivan” I thought it would be amusing to explain you were that name came from:
    A guy called “Ivan” is the one that brought in Haagen Dazs ice cream on the island (and still does), and had one of the most successful ice cream parlors located at Sonesta Maho Beach Plaza, right next to Cheri’s Café. Now, everyone new him, as he is tall and has his hair permed blonde. After many years, all of a sudden he wasn’t there anymore, he had sold the place… Where’s Ivan??? That is what everyone was saying. Ivan was planning his next success, the one you went to. Would you believe, he made it such a success, that a French lady made him an offer he couldn’t refuse? So now we have to ask again… Where’s Ivan??? Hope to have you back on St. Maarten, and certainly try the Etna Ice Cream as well.

  4. Brenda

    February 7, 2008 at 11:24 am

    What a great story, Dimitri! Thanks so much for sharing that. And now, I have to wonder, where IS Ivan?? Who knows, maybe he’ll see this and post to tell us! So, was the place in Simpson’s Bay named by Ivan himself, or by the French lady who bought it from him?

    And now I really MUST get back to St Maarten ASAP to try that Etna ice cream!

  5. Dawn

    February 18, 2008 at 1:05 am

    You guys are so cute. Wish I could have been there with ya! You will have to try all the goma (sesame), sweet potato, green tea, and red bean ice cream you can manage while visiting me here in Japan! 😀


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