Good eats: Trowbridge's orange-pineapple ice cream worth the drive

Jennifer Cohron
Posted 8/11/17

Zac, Wyatt and I took a road trip to Florence last week in search of ice cream.

Trowbridge’s is the oldest business in the city still operating in its original location. A dairyman named Paul Trowbridge opened the business in 1918 after falling …

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Good eats: Trowbridge's orange-pineapple ice cream worth the drive

Posted

Zac, Wyatt and I took a road trip to Florence last week in search of ice cream.

Trowbridge’s is the oldest business in the city still operating in its original location. A dairyman named Paul Trowbridge opened the business in 1918 after falling in love with Florence while on his way to a dairy convention in North Carolina.

Trowbridge’s shares North Court Street with an eclectic mix of restaurants: 306 BBQ, Rosie’s Mexican Cantina, Ricatoni’s Italian Grill and Yumm Thai Sushi & Beyond.

Its aqua-colored awning was a welcome beacon as we navigated noonday traffic.

Inside, we found a dozen or more locals munching on sandwiches and taking big bites out of ice cream cones.

Trowbridge’s is known for its orange-pineapple ice cream. The recipe, developed by Mr. Trowbridge, earned the simple sandwich shop its spot on the list of 100 Dishes to Eat in Alabama Before You Die.

I noticed that as waitresses went from table to table chatting up customers, they always asked, “Y’all having ice cream today?” before placing the check on the table. A large menu board behind the counter listed all the possible flavors of cones, sundaes, shakes and ice cream soda.

I had a scoop of the orange-pineapple and can recommend it without reservation.

This week, foodies in Jasper are getting their first taste of Alabama Restaurant Week.

The promotion was first organized by the Alabama Tourism Department in 2012 as part of the second Year of Alabama Food.

It was the first time a theme had been repeated since the department launched its year-long marketing campaign in 2004 with the Year of Alabama Gardens.

The first celebration of food in 2005 succeeded beyond everyone’s expectations.

“While our agency went on to salute such topics as history, sports, arts, outdoors, music and ‘Small Towns & Downtowns,’ the state’s growing army of foodies often ask, ‘When are you going to do food again?’ an old press release from the tourism department states.

The highlight of the event was the 100 Dishes to Eat in Alabama Before You Die brochure.

The release describes the brochure as a “sleeper hit” that attracted attention in every corner of the state as well as from national culinary writers.

The department planned the second Year of Alabama Food in 2012 in hopes of boosting the state’s seafood industry, which was struggling as a result of the 2010 BP oil spill.

The popular 100 Dishes brochure was reissued with several key changes.

“Our previous annual updates of ‘100 Dishes’ featured photos of restaurants and chefs. Because of Alabama’s ranking as the second ‘most obese state’ behind Mississippi, we made a tactical decision to encourage healthier food choices by featuring photos of specific dishes that are not fried,” the release states.

The red tomato from the original brochure was also replaced with a green one in honor of Fannie Flagg’s novel-turned-blockbuster “Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistlestop Cafe.” (Of course, fried green tomatoes from the Irondale Cafe is one of the 100 dishes.)

Walker County was represented on the original list by two dishes — barbecue with vinegar/tomato sauce at Green Top Cafe and smokehouse ham, sausage, bacon and cathead biscuits from Uncle Mort’s, which is now closed.

The current list still includes Green Top’s barbecue, and Uncle Mort’s has been replaced by catfish pontchartrain at Black Rock Bistro.

A pdf of the brochure, which is now titled 100 Dishes to Eat in Alabama, is available at www.ilovealabamafood.com.

The site also includes information about five regional food trails, as well as the Alabama BBQ trail, which includes Green Top as one of the stops.

Recipes, photos of some of Alabama’s most famous dishes and a blog that lists monthly “can’t miss” food events are also featured on the site.

Since I’m talking about food, I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that WALKER Magazine now has a recipe and story on a local chef in each quarterly issue.

If you have a recipe to submit for a future issue, please email it to walkermagazine@mountaineagle.com or jennifer.cohron@mountaineagle.com.

Jennifer Cohron is the Daily Mountain Eagle’s features editor.