Saturday, May 31, 2014

Bobtail Year-in-Review

24 pints, 12 months, 1 man to eat them all.
My Bobtail Year, which lasted from June 2013 through May 2014, consisted of receiving two pints of Bobtail Homemade Ice Cream a month for donating to Oracle Theatre.

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A year's worth of Bobtail ice cream is many things. It is in touch with pop culture via flavors named after a self-objectifying twerking enthusiast or a murderous medieval tagline. It makes use of the flavors of the season, be it a favorite dessert at Thanksgiving or a certain Valentine's Day treat. It honors people in uniform, including Chicago's lovable losers and young dealers who profit off of addicts during their annual nationwide baked goods sale. It is a little bit nutty, whether by way of legumes or actual tree nuts paired with chocolate. It is abstract, often in the form of concepts Kevin Spacey once referenced in a string of murders. It is an inquisitive study of farm animals. But above all else, a year's worth of Bobtail ice cream is inspired. But, twenty-four pints later, one has to ask: which flavors were the best?

Without a doubt my favorite Bobtail creation over the past twelve months was Lemongrass Mint Ginger. Though almost a year has passed since I tasted this flavor, I remember its nuances well. The subtle way each of its three namesakes floated in and out, playing off one another perfectly. Though it was a rare occurrence when I found myself doubting that Lemongrass Mint Ginger was as good as I remembered it being, it was put to the test when Bobtail offered Lemongrass ice cream partway through the year. It was delicious, but it was a sad nostalgia, like when you drive down the main drag of your hometown and see some of the stores had closed. I missed the spice of the mint. I missed the carbonated-like effect of the crystallized ginger sprinkled throughout. I hate to drag a solo artist through the mud--Honestly, Lemongrass, you were great--but I hope the band gets back together someday because Lemongrass Mint Ginger was one of the best, a legend on a spoon.

Both of the runners-up are four-legged flavors. First, there was the oddly-named 'Goat?', which brilliantly added goat cheese to the classic pairing of blackberry and vanilla. Pretty and delicate, both in color and on the tongue, it was an inspired twist on an underrated favorite. Next, there was Sloth which, for reason that escape me now, was never actually given its own post. Sloth had a peanut butter base with marshmallow and butterscotch mixed in. I'm not usually one for peanut butter flavors, but this one did it for me.

As luck would have it, the story doesn't end here. Chris over at Bobtail has been a big fan of my blog posts and was kind enough to send me a new punchcard for another year of Bobtail ice cream! Year two begins in June.

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