There's no tastier version of the New England staple than Toscanini's traditional vanilla malted frappe—not just in the Hub, but anywhere under the sun. Oh, and when it is under the sun, the dairy delight holds up superbly: Served in a clear plastic cup and plugged with a wide straw, the thick frozen shake stays that way until the very last slurp of homemade greatness. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA 2139, tosci.com.
In a quiet, understated way. Try the gingersnap molasses. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA .
It's insanely rich, full of intense flavor, and made right on-site. Quite simply: This is a place that all ice cream aficionados must go before they die. Our all-time favorite scoops include the nocciola (hazelnut) and the famous burnt caramel. Yet with Toscanini's ever-rotating inventory (mango ginger, Earl Grey, and lemon pistachio, to name a few), you'll surely find your own pilgrimage-worthy flavor in no time. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA 2139, tosci.com.
The one downside to ordering at Toscanini's is trying to choose from flavors like the obscenely rich B3 (brown butter, brownie, and brown sugar); tangy, creamy goat cheese-brownie; and exotic Earl Grey. It's enough to give you brain freeze. The best remedy we know is to get 'em all in a massive cup, douse the whole thing in a river of hot fudge, and dig in. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA 2139, tosci.com.
899 Main St., Cambridge, MA 2139, tosci.com.
Creamy and dreamy. Grown-up flavors without hype. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA .
This sweet spot's rotating cast of ultracreamy flavors ranges from worldly (burnt caramel, bananas foster) to otherworldly (mango chili, sage) and everything in between, providing thrills for ice cream traditionalists and adventurists alike. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA 2139, tosci.com.
This stuff is outrageously creamy. The consistency is mousse-like without being airy, rich without being heavy. Toscanini's selection of original flavors seems to change hourly (depending on how busy they are) and ranges from the exotic (cardamom) to the stout (Guinness...yes, that Guinness) to your basic chocolate and vanilla. The prices are a bit steep but worth it. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA .
Toscanini's understands that life can be as simple as vanilla and chocolate or as complicated as burnt caramel or gingersnap molasses. Whatever your philosophical fancy, this heavenly ice cream parlor will whet your palate with its downright dazzling roster of original flavors. Where else can you find such sophisticated permutations as saffron ice cream or cucumber sorbet? 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA tosci.com.
You need not travel to Italy to taste the best. Each bite of Toscanini's divine ice cream conjures memories of Italian piazzas, gelato peddlers, and starry summer nights. Simple is what these guys do best—chocolate, vanilla, and coffee as you've never tasted them. If you're feeling adventurous, delve into sophisticated flavors like burnt caramel or cardamom. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA .
Owner Gus Rancatore is a bona fide gourmet, a guy with a penchant for combining unusual flavors and unique textures. As a result, his inventive ice creams—in flavors like goat cheese-brownie, bourbon flake, and even pancake—push the boundaries of the palate while remaining undeniably delicious. Our favorite way to enjoy his scoops? Nestled in an Iggy's brioche bun and drizzled with hot fudge—it's the ice cream sandwich, Gus-style. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA tosci.com.
The rest of the country can have their thin (ice cream-free) milkshake; we Yankees will happily take the frapp—preferably from Toscanini's, where the ice cream is supernatural and the milk doesn't overpower its flavor. And the texture? This drink is as easy to eat with a spoon as it is to slurp through a straw. Meanwhile, huge snaps go to the patient staffers, who keep lines moving at an admirable pace. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA 2139, tosci.com.
We can confidently say that we’ve sampled just about every cone in Greater Boston—and scoop by scoop, Gus Rancatore’s Central Square ice cream shop remains unchallenged. The endless array of creative flavors—bourbon black pepper, mango-ginger, green tea—keeps things interesting, but it’s the thick, custardy texture that makes this ultra-rich ice cream the undisputed heavyweight champion of the slow-churned world. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA 2139, tosci.com.
There are plenty of Boston ice cream shops worthy of caloric indulgence, but none as enticing as this one. The selection may not be the biggest in town, but it's varied enough for even the pickiest of palates, with about a dozen incredibly smooth and rich flavors including Hydrox cookie, Vienna Finger, burnt caramel, and ginger-snap molasses. The real draw, though, is the super-light texture, which especially comes through in the richly flavored nocciola (hazelnut) and Belgian chocolate varieties. 899 Main St., Cambridge, MA tosci.com.