Lick Ice Creams: Austin Bucket List for 2015

2015 Austin Bucket Lists

We say it all the time, but we do truly believe it: Austin is an amazing place to raise a family. With this in mind, we’re on a mission to go discover all the things which make our town special. To help get out more without getting overwhelmed, we came up with the Austin Bucket List project. Each year, we pick 10 things we’d like to do in Austin — with or without our kids. That sounds doable, doesn’t it? Then, we document our adventures here, with the idea of getting each of you inspired to do the same.

What’s an endeavor like this without a few friends along for the ride? We asked our blogger friends in Austin who’d like to join us on the Austin Bucket List project, and we were thrilled to have several takers. Today’s report is from Skye Kilean, who is embarking upon her second year of crossing off bucket list items and shares with us her experience visiting Lick Ice Creams with her son. Here’s what she had to say:

We didn’t set out for ice cream that day. We set out for doughnuts. We should have set out for an amazing Austin adventure, granted, but we’ve had a tough 2015 so far – and dessert always helps. But the wait at Gourdough’s Public House was an hour that afternoon, so I tried to think of another Austin dessert location I’d been wanting to try… and Lick came to mind.

Truth be told, I’d written it off as “go when you have a babysitter.” The flavors I’d heard of from Lick were all so quirky. But I’d promised a fancy dessert, and we really needed a change of pace from our regular haunts, so I kept driving north on Lamar… and then turned around and drove south again, because I’d missed it. It’s just south of La Feria Mexican Restaurant and Henri’s, which are both easier to spot from the street.

Once I’d found it, my first impression? How the heck am I EVER going to park here?! Seriously, the parking lot is atrocious.

Past that hurdle, though, things got much better. The line wasn’t terribly long. The menu was clearly spelled out, and included some recognizable flavors. And Boy Detective didn’t hold the lack of doughnuts against me when he realized he could get ice cream in a waffle cone bowl.

So here’s what you need to know about Lick:

Lick specializes in local, seasonal ingredients, and they do have bizarro flavors like Roasted Beets & Fresh Mint, which is what media coverage loves to highlight. Hence my apprehension about going there with a kid.

But they also have a long list of everyday flavors that includes things like Milk Chocolate (Boy Detective loved it), Caramel Salt Lick (I loved it), and Hill Country Honey and Vanilla Bean (I liked it mixed up with broken waffle cone.)

The list of flavors is on hand-written index cards tacked to a ladder against a wall… which will be completely or partially hidden by people in line except for the point where you’re directly in front of it while waiting. Since there is a paragraph long description of each one, I found it difficult to process in the time we had without holding up the line.

See what I mean?

I wish I’d visited the website first!

This place ain’t cheap. A small is 2 golf-ball scoops of ice cream for $3.69, though they’re happy to give you 2 different flavors. It may not look like much, but Boy Detective couldn’t finish his, and I’d eaten half his ice cream (with his permission, of course, he wasn’t a big fan of the strawberries and cream.)

The waffle cone bowls are really tasty, and they put them inside cardboard bowls, so you don’t have to worry about ice cream all over your kid’s shirt. Or your own shirt. Waffle cones and waffle cone bowls are an extra charge of 95 cents.

They have several dairy-free options, and some of those are vegan. (The non-vegan ones have egg in them.) I’m not usually a fan of the non-dairy options at ice cream places, since it’s usually ices or sorbets. The choices at Lick look way better! But they are all (currently) coconut-based, so if that’s not your jam, you may be out of luck.

And, warming my heart, if your little one needs to see the ice cream to decide, or needs a little place to sit, the folks at Lick have thought of that:

Though I’m a little worried there wouldn’t be much space to use them, if it was crowded! We were there on a somewhat rainy afternoon and people in line were commenting about how short the line was compared to the last time they’d been there.

We survived the parking lot, got lucky on the wait time, and had some really good ice cream. I also learned something about assuming that I can’t go to a particular place with kiddo in tow. It always pays to do your homework and see what the options might be!