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    Five minutes before the ice cream shop officially opens, there is already a crowd of people waiting by the counter, contemplating the options. A balsamic strawberry sundae? Or maybe a scoop of salted butter caramel ice cream? A bowl or a pretzel cone?

    At noon on Friday, June 23, the owners switch on a red and blue neon sign shaped like an ice cream cone. Louisville Cream’s first brick and mortar store is open for business. 

    Before long, the line extends out the door, and outside on E. Market St., several people eat their ice cream cones and sundaes on benches. Louisville Cream is full of people devouring decadent sundaes, bowls of ice cream covered in toppings like whipped cream and hot fudge.


    A pretzel cone with scoops of Mascarpone & Strawberries (bottom scoop) and Raspberry Fudge Brownie (top scoop).

    “It seems kind of surreal,” co-owner Darryl Goodner says. “We worked really hard to get here.”

    The business started when co-owners and friends Goodner and Zach Hardin began serving their ice cream at weddings. This led to more catering opportunities, and in 2014, Louisville Cream added another co-owner, Lynette Ruby, and started selling ice cream from a mobile cart at local farmers markets, festivals and other events. 

    The sundaes and other specialty treats are new to Louisville Cream. Opening a store has allowed them to expand their menu beyond ice cream scoops. Now they serve treats like the buttered brioche sundae, caramelized banana split and balsamic strawberry sundae.


    Louisville Cream's Buttered Brioche Sundae, which includes Salted Butter Caramel ice cream.

    The Louisville Cream owners like to experiment with their ice cream flavors, often including unexpected tastes and combinations. “We all just like to eat, so we just think of different things and try them,” Goodner says. “Once you understand the basics, you can do whatever you want.”

    The ice cream selection of 11 flavors will rotate monthly. Classics like vanilla and chocolate will probably stay on the menu, but the business is small enough for the owners to change flavors on a whim.

    Blueberry cheesecake and mascarpone and strawberries are some of the new flavors. There are also two new vegan options: espresso fudge brownie and lemon rosemary sorbet. The shop also sells pints of ice cream, including some flavors they are not currently serving at the counter. 

    Louisville Cream is focused on locally sourced ingredients, Goodner says. Their dairy comes from JD Country Milk, and the bourbon smoked pecan flavor includes Bulleit bourbon. The baked goods are made in-house, including the brownies in their raspberry fudge brownie ice cream.


    A bowl of Louisville Cream's Speculoos Cookie Butter ice cream with a pretzel cone.

    Charles Green, one of the first customers at the shop, orders a bowl of the Vanilla 2 Ways ice cream topped with whipped cream and balsamic strawberry sauce. “The strawberry sauce isn’t like super sweet, but it really tastes like strawberries,” he says. “It balances out really nice, because the ice cream is pretty sweet, and so is the whipped cream.”

    As she talks with her friends at a table, Kara Miller tries a scoop of the blueberry cheesecake ice cream. “My grandma always makes a homemade blueberry cheesecake, and it tastes like hers, so it is good memories and good ice cream,” she says.


    Shelby Fessenden, Julie Dycus and Kara Miller chat as they eat their ice cream at Friday's soft opening.

    To stay up-to-date on their schedule, follow Louisville Cream on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!

    All photos by Brooke McAfee

    Cover photo: The line extends outside the door at Friday's soft opening at Louisville Cream. 

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