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Moorenko's Ice Cream Cafe - Reopen in Silver Spring


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  There is also a new ice cream place open two doors from Crisfield, near Mayorga.  I haven't stopped to take a close look at either.  Anybody know anything more?

The ice cream place I mentioned above got today's space in the Post "Foraging" column. It's called Moorenko and is a branch of a similar place in McLean. Ultra-premium ice cream (17+% butterfat). The owner seems serious about what she does, and is said to travel regularly to Italy to sniff out new trends.

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Funny, I grew up in McLean and in the 80's, my mom was way into Jazzercise. Turns out her Jazzercise instructor of many years is now the same lady who owns Moorenkos. I haven't actually tried the ice cream but I still remember her in leotards and leg warmers :lol:

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I have been to the in McLean several times and really have enjoyed it. The last time I was there I tried the peach ice cream, and it tasted just like a fresh peach. The strawberry ice cream is also very good. My neice puts in a vote for the cotton candy gummi bear, but for me that would be a submission for the "Too old to eat it" thread.

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Stopped by the Silver Spring location tonight. It is GOOD. I tried a sampler bowl--3 small scoops, including blueberry, raspberry with chocolate chips, and dulce de leche. My wife had a hot fudge sundae. We were the only ones in the store at first, but a wave of people came in and the guy behind the counter proclaimed the crush to be the first time there had been an actual line. It's going to be a fun place.

The blueberry was so good that I bought a pint to take home. The butterfat level is off the charts, so this isn't ice cream for those who like it on the light side.

Highly recommended. :lol:

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Stopped by the Silver Spring location tonight.  It is GOOD.  I tried a sampler bowl--3 small scoops, including blueberry, raspberry with chocolate chips, and dulce de leche.  My wife had a hot fudge sundae.  We were the only ones in the store at first, but a wave of people came in and the guy behind the counter proclaimed the crush to be the first time there had been an actual line.  It's going to be a fun place. 

The blueberry was so good that I bought a pint to take home.  The butterfat level is off the charts, so this isn't ice cream for those who like it on the light side.

Highly recommended.  :lol:

SO and I made it in this eve. I had the blueberry based on Jeff C remark above, and coconut because I love it. Both very good. "Small" serving divided between the two flavors--it was a lot. SO chose the cherry with choc. chips in cone, She thought it was really good, including the cone. Very thick rich ice cream. Seems to have a bit of crystalization, but very heavy anyway. And the flavors really are intense.

Worth a visit.

Edited by johnb
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Do they have any "unique" flavors, aside from the pomegranate sorbet mentioned in the article?  I'm headed to Takoma Park tonight and may stop by beforehand.

I stopped in this afternoon after coffee at Mayorga. This was the best ice cream I have had in a long time! I admit that I have been on a B&J kick lately, but B&J has no flavor compared to this.

They have a seasonal pumkin ice cream that the kids loved.

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It is on Chain Bridge Rd, right where it splits with with Old Chain Bridge Rd.

Yup, went this afternoon with a friend who lives in McLean, and we'd have driven right past it if she hadn't been with us.

I had the Megajolt, my +1 had the Cookie Overload, and our friend had the Cookie Dough. I'm afraid I wasn't offered an articulate opinion on the Cookie Dough, but for what it's worth my +1 thought the Cookie Overload was far superior to anything he's had at Thomas Sweet.

The CO contains cookie dough, plus broken-up bits of chocolate chip cookies and Oreos. My +1 wasn't able to tell whether the base was vanilla or sweet cream, and I wasn't able to get a taste 'cos he finished it just that fast. :lol:

The Megajolt is a coffee ice cream with chocolate chunks. I've found that coffee ice creams that use the real deal tend towards a consistency like that of gelato, and this version was no exception. For those who enjoy the sweet-cream-with-a-little-espresso-powder varieties of coffee ice cream, this would not be your thing. It was most delicious.

The +1 and I also enjoyed the French Hot Chocolate, served in a sizable bowl that is (according to our friend) normally reserved for the large servings of ice cream. I half-expected a pain chocolat to come with it. I loved it, but my +1 found it a bit odd - he ordinarily takes his hot chocolate very sweet.

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It is Kefa Cafe that has the big gelato sign. haven't been there in years and never tried the gelato, but there usually seems to be a small growd outside. We usual flock to Moorenko down the street instead.
Moorenko has gelato, too?! Two gelato places aso close together in Silver Spring??!
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sorry to mislead...No Gelato at Moorenko's but the ice cream is so damn good that I prefer it over Gelato. But there is close by Gelato at Mamma Lucia on East-West Hwy in Silver Spring. Haven't had it but they have about 15-20 flavors.

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sorry to mislead...No Gelato at Moorenko's but the ice cream is so damn good that I prefer it over Gelato.

Ah, but there is a connection. Soorenko studies gelato making on regular trips to Italy, and sources the majority of her prepared flavorings from Italian gelato suppliers. I asked Matthew why they didn't also offer gelato, and it came down to both personal preference, and the fact that good gelato is extremely perishable and cannot be stored for more than a day or two, in his mom's opinion.

I felt that it was time to take one for the team, so despite the great arterial peril, I ate two samplers today, and tasted several other flavors as well. Please...no need to thank me :unsure:

This is very good ice cream. Very, very good. How good? I think their uncommon flavors are even better than Toscanini's in Cambridge. It's certainly a different style, with the high butterfat content lending a smooth richness that cannot be approached by lesser creams that rely on corn syrup, carageenan, or other additives. Her ice creams are flavored to an intensity that compliments the original ingredient without being overpowering or oversweetened. They're subtle.

The cantaloupe is amazing. Tastes just like ripe cantaloupe, aromatics and all. I'd eat this first, because the flavors could easily be overpowered by half of the others. The blueberry is rich in frozen bits of blueberries and just sweet enough to enhance the berry flavor. I went ga-ga for the pistachio/white chocolate flavor, which seems to get all of its flavor from the nuts. I find raspberry often overpowering, but her black raspberry/chocolate tasted like raspberries...not like raspberry syrup. The cherry flavors are unusual - she uses Italian amarena cherries, thoroughly macerated, which are mildly tart instead of sugary sweet. There's a terrific cinnamon as well.

I was less taken with the strawberry, which was a bit too subtle for my personal tastes. The pomegranate sorbet is also wonderfully refreshing but she does use corn syrup in the recipe to give it a bit more body, which gives it a very slightly gummy texture...I'd prefer it a little purer and icier. Coconut was good, but not a knock-out.

It's a family operation, with the ice creams being made at the plant in McLean using dairy from a small producer in Pennsylvania...too small to afford the much-ballyhooed organic certification process, although they claim to use fully organic methods. The clerks have an ingredient list behind the counter covering each flavor, in case you're concerned about ingredient allergies. The Silver Spring location has been open since last fall, but its contact info still isn't on their website:

8030-B Georgia Ave., Silver Spring, MD 20910

301 588 5656

It suffers from being in an inconspicuous spot with nonobvious parking, so GO and visit. They're two doors down from Crisfields and next to Mayorga Coffee, on the southbound side of Georgia Ave. just beyond the railroad overpass and prior to East-West Highway. Dedicated parking is available in a converted alleyway between the overpass and the building; bring your parking stub to the counter for free validation.

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My wife is hooked on the "cotton candy with gummy bears". She is amazed that the bears stay gummy in the ice cream. I am amazed that a grown adult can eat blue cotton candy ice cream. My favorite flavor has been the coffee with chocolate chips in it.

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This is very good ice cream. <snip> It's certainly a different style, with the high butterfat content lending a smooth richness that cannot be approached by lesser creams that rely on corn syrup, carageenan, or other additives. Her ice creams are flavored to an intensity that compliments the original ingredient without being overpowering or oversweetened. They're subtle.

Just in case anyone is interested in a dissenting opinion: I disagree. The butterfat contect is so high is feels like eating flavored butter. It doesn't seem smooth to me at all. Out of a half dozen or so times I've tried it, only once was it not somewhat icy and granular. And the flavors I tried were powerhouses - about as subtle as a KO.

We can state objectively that Moorenko's ice cream has a high butterfat content, but whether or not you like it that way is subjective - it depends on you. Dave likes it, I think it not worth the calories... so go and try for yourself and report back. I'd be interested in what others think.

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I tried the blueberry, cinnamon, and mint chocolate chip several weeks ago and thought they were pretty good, just not spectacular. Nothing wrong with the intensity or creaminess, but mostly because my tastes have simply become more gelato-inclined.

But last weekend, I brought a quart of the peach melba to a barbeque (instead of the usual beer/wine). Talk about a guaranteed way to receive props from the other guests! On top of tasting like actual fruit, there was an extra "zing" to the flavor. I dunno how else to describe it. A definite winner.

I'll still probably splurge on the occasional pint of Capogiro, but this is my go-to dessert going forward.

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It suffers from being in an inconspicuous spot with nonobvious parking, so GO and visit. They're two doors down from Crisfields and next to Mayorga Coffee, on the southbound side of Georgia Ave. just beyond the railroad overpass and prior to East-West Highway. Dedicated parking is available in a converted alleyway between the overpass and the building; bring your parking stub to the counter for free validation.
This is all very nice, but is it Metro accesible?

I feel like having ice cream for dinner. :)

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This is all very nice, but is it Metro accesible?

I feel like having ice cream for dinner. :)

Actually, if you walk from the SS metro, you *might* burn off a sliver of that butterfat =p

In all seriousness, I'd say it's a little over a 1/2 mile from the SS metro..

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I tried the blueberry, cinnamon, and mint chocolate chip several weeks ago and thought they were pretty good, just not spectacular. Nothing wrong with the intensity or creaminess, but mostly because my tastes have simply become more gelato-inclined.

But last weekend, I brought a quart of the peach melba to a barbeque (instead of the usual beer/wine). Talk about a guaranteed way to receive props from the other guests! On top of tasting like actual fruit, there was an extra "zing" to the flavor. I dunno how else to describe it. A definite winner.

I'll still probably splurge on the occasional pint of Capogiro, but this is my go-to dessert going forward.

I was looking for something to make this heat more palatable, so the Peach Melba may be just the thing! I'm on my way out the door. :)

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I stopped by while visiting with friends today. I tried the megajolt and the salted caramel. The caramel was so good I was sorry I got two flavors of ice cream instead of one. Nice swirl of caramel and occasional lumps of salty burnt sugar in a creamy, rich base. Highly recommended.

I considered getting the brioche ice cream sandwich, but decided on just ice cream today. Has anybody tried it?

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I stopped by while visiting with friends today. I tried the megajolt and the salted caramel. The caramel was so good I was sorry I got two flavors of ice cream instead of one. Nice swirl of caramel and occasional lumps of salty burnt sugar in a creamy, rich base. Highly recommended.

I considered getting the brioche ice cream sandwich, but decided on just ice cream today. Has anybody tried it?

I love the salted caramel. I got that last time I went with dark chocolate and it was a home run for me. I asked them about the flavor and they said a patron had gotten salt caramel ice cream in France and came back to the US and asked them to make it.

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I noticed recently that the Clarendon Whole Foods is carrying pints of Moorenko ice cream. I bought coconut almond this weekend (says from McLean location, manufactured on 4/28). Rich, slightly icy. I also need to remember next time that as a general matter, coconut flavor reminds me of suntan lotion. There was also a lavender flavor, vanilla, and some others. In taking a look around the internet, I noticed that Whole Foods has awarded Moorenko a local producer loan (link)

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Picked up some pints at the farmer's market at the American Flatbread One Year Anniversary on Sunday. It managed to survive the heat and the ride home, and now my freezer is full of an absurdly decadent creme fraiche ice cream and their "red hot" chocolate with its pleasantly surprising spicy finish.

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I noticed recently that the Clarendon Whole Foods is carrying pints of Moorenko ice cream.

Anyone know if this is true for other WFs in the area?

I recently brought a quart of orange stracciatella to a dinner party. HUGE hit.

Over the weekend, I tried the black raspberry chocolate chip. Not as great but still satisfying.

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It suffers from being in an inconspicuous spot with nonobvious parking, so GO and visit. They're two doors down from Crisfields and next to Mayorga Coffee, on the southbound side of Georgia Ave. just beyond the railroad overpass and prior to East-West Highway. Dedicated parking is available in a converted alleyway between the overpass and the building; bring your parking stub to the counter for free validation.
Two years later and parking still big issue - They do have complimentary valet in the alley.
I was looking for something to make this heat more palatable, so the Peach Melba may be just the thing! I'm on my way out the door. :lol:
Had the Peach Melba last night - Perfect summer flavor.
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The Reston Whole Foods now has Moorenko's as well. The Rice Pudding flavor is kind of interesting - unlike their other flavors, it doesn't come across as super-creamy. Basically it's frozen rice pudding - very good frozen rice pudding, to be sure, but not really ice cream as such.

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Had the Peach Melba last night - Perfect summer flavor.

Was this in McLean or purchased at WF? My friends and I stopped by the SS location on the evening of June 21st before Silverdocs at the AFI and did not see peach melba offered. I had the dark chocolate -- slightly grainy in texture but excellent richness.

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I got the Peach Melba that night in Silver Spring store. Just got my mouth watering - Thinking about running over, will check if they have tonight. Edited to add - Just called and no Peach Melba tonight. Damn really wanted too.

Was this in McLean or purchased at WF? My friends and I stopped by the SS location on the evening of June 21st before Silverdocs at the AFI and did not see peach melba offered. I had the dark chocolate -- slightly grainy in texture but excellent richness.
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Was in McLean and drove by to get a scoop of ice cream but much to my disappointment, Moorenko's in McLean was a dark space (there was a sign in the window for one of the new yogurt places coming soon). Any idea what happened? Their website still indicates that they are in McLean.

Actually I forgot to post a while ago; driving through SS I noticed that location closed as well. Maybe they are just concentrating on selling product in stores now?

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In Silver Spring the construction for the past two years destroyed that location. I hope she gets to open another location.

WF does not do this product justice and Susan is the nicest lady (Only met her once after her store screwed up my order - She made it right, a fresh batch is more than making up for it). Is Hell Burger still serving Moorenko's?

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In Silver Spring the construction for the past two years destroyed that location. I hope she gets to open another location.

Actually, I'd say poor service, no selection, and lack of available street parking "destroyed" the Silver Spring store. Every time I went there, it seemed as if only one cooler ever worked, which meant they only had half the flavors available, and they usually tasted off, like they'd been melted and refrozen a few times. And don't even get me started on the employees. Yikes. It's a shame, because there's no other decent ice cream place around...

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It's a shame Moorenko's ice cream shops closed. I thought the Silver Spring location was still open, but I guess not. I know they still sell wholesale because I saw it at Ray's Hell Burger. I have yet to see it at Whole Foods.

At any rate, their loss is our gain! Everyone is welcome to come to our ice cream shop, Scoop Beauregard's Ice Cream & Coffee in Arlington, VA. We're right off Washington Blvd. If you come and ask for Toby, mention you saw this on Don Rockwell's and I'll even give you 20% off your ice cream! We serve homemade, superpremium ice cream, and we'll soon be making it on the premises. When I was in college, I was an ice cream maker for a local homemade ice cream company and also took the University of Maryland Ice Cream short course. With the weather getting warmer, drop by and say hi!

Lick locally, think globally!

Toby

Scoop Beauregard's Ice Cream & Coffee

Arlington, VA

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Maybe they are just concentrating on selling product in stores now?
My guess is probably not, as this past weekend's trip to the Tyson's WF carried only about six remaining pints in the freezer section, with the pint I purchased date stamped: 4/7/09. Any updates?
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My guess is probably not, as this past weekend's trip to the Tyson's WF carried only about six remaining pints in the freezer section, with the pint I purchased date stamped: 4/7/09. Any updates?

*Extreme* long-time lurker feeling the need to post due to excitement over the Silver Spring Moorenkos seemiingly open. While stopping by Mayorga last evening, Moorenkos had all the lights on (including outside neon sign), tables set up, workers hustling about, and the board with flavors written up. Saw one of the workers locking the door at 9pm.

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*Extreme* long-time lurker feeling the need to post due to excitement over the Silver Spring Moorenkos seemiingly open. While stopping by Mayorga last evening, Moorenkos had all the lights on (including outside neon sign), tables set up, workers hustling about, and the board with flavors written up. Saw one of the workers locking the door at 9pm.

I really hope this is the case, they are by far the best Silver Spring ice cream option.

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I really hope this is the case, they are by far the best Silver Spring ice cream option.

Confession: I have not been in several years but York Castle in Montgomery Hills uses the ORIGINAL Gifford's base. While they promote their tropical flavors if you try a Swiss sundae there (or their Swiss chocolate ice cream) I believe you will feel that it is better than Moorenko's. Again, I do not know if it still has the same owner but York Castle was started by the man who made Gifford's ice cream at Georgia and Sligo for ten years or so. When Gifford's closed he opened weeks later as York Castle using the exact same base, making the same Swiss chocolate sauce, etc. The Gifford's in Bethesda bought the name but a number of the flavors are different from the original. (i.e. cookie's and cream) I know that York Castle has been around 25 or more years but I grew up eating Gifford's ice cream and was probably their best customer. I was at the Silver Spring Gifford's the day they closed and was at York Castle the day it opened.

It would be devastating if York Castle has changed! But again, I am ONLY talking about the original York Castle in Montgomery Hills.

From York Castle's website, the two signature Gifford flavors: "Peppermint Stick(made with crushed candy canes); Swiss Chocolate(made from scratch from homemade Swiss chocolate sauce)."

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Confession: I have not been in several years but York Castle in Montgomery Hills uses the ORIGINAL Gifford's base. While they promote their tropical flavors if you try a Swiss sundae there (or their Swiss chocolate ice cream) I believe you will feel that it is better than Moorenko's. Again, I do not know if it still has the same owner but York Castle was started by the man who made Gifford's ice cream at Georgia and Sligo for ten years or so. When Gifford's closed he opened weeks later as York Castle using the exact same base, making the same Swiss chocolate sauce, etc. The Gifford's in Bethesda bought the name but a number of the flavors are different from the original. (i.e. cookie's and cream) I know that York Castle has been around 25 or more years but I grew up eating Gifford's ice cream and was probably their best customer. I was at the Silver Spring Gifford's the day they closed and was at York Castle the day it opened.

It would be devastating if York Castle has changed! But again, I am ONLY talking about the original York Castle in Montgomery Hills.

Never heard of Swiss chocolate sauce and I assume that it is not just chocolate sauce made with Swiss chocolate. What makes it Swiss? Is it Toblerone-like?

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I can confirm that the Silver Spring Moorenko's is stil open. Last night I had Creme Fraiche and Peach Melba Ice cream yum! I lament the fact that they never have salted caramel whenever I'm there. The scooper told me that they always run out of it super fast so I auggested they put a special sign up when they have in stock so I can see when I'm driving past georgia avenue.

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I can confirm that the Silver Spring Moorenko's is stil open. Last night I had Creme Fraiche and Peach Melba Ice cream yum! I lament the fact that they never have salted caramel whenever I'm there. The scooper told me that they always run out of it super fast so I auggested they put a special sign up when they have in stock so I can see when I'm driving past georgia avenue.

Also, I noticed that Listrani's in McLean is now serving Moorenko's.

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