This Weekend’s Must Taste: A New Scoop, From Portland

This ice cream was born up North, but it’s being bred in L.A.

If you’re in L.A. this weekend (and why wouldn’t you be? The weather is going to be great; the fireworks shows spectacular), you must find time to stop into Joan’s on Third. You may be wanting to avoid the place because there’s likely to be a line out the door. But please persist. On the other hand, you might be headed there anyway—to pick up some potato chips, or fried chicken, perhaps. But you can skip those things if the line looks too long, OK? And go straight to the ice cream counter.

There, in place of what were some nondescript gelati, is now a quaint selection of ice cream from Portland’s Salt & Straw. Recently, we were floored by how “Portland-y” owners and cousins Kim and Tyler Malek seemed. And also how sweet and exacting they were in both their love for and production of ice cream.

This is something that came out of Kim Malek’s mouth: “We don’t mean to sound too ‘Portlandia’ here, but we know the farmers and cows who produce our cream.” Tyler chimed in, adding details about how they picked the bourbon they use for their coffee & bourbon flavor. And after we finished performing a half-hearted, obligatory L.A. eyeroll, we licked our spoon clean.

Joan McNamara is happy to have Salt & Straw on board. “I was looking for a long time before I found these two,” she said. As Joan’s on Third expands, so too does Salt & Straw’s L.A. footprint. “It is part of my plan to place Salt & Straw in the next Joan’s location, when it opens in Studio City.”

So we urge you, this weekend, as soon as possible, get to Joan’s on Third to taste the sea salt ice cream with caramel ribbons; coffee & bourbon (made with Stumptown coffee beans, obviously); chocolate gooey brownie (they fold marshmallow fluff into the brownie before baking it; pick your jaw up off the floor); and signature Meyer lemon and blueberry buttermilk custard.

Don’t waste time with a scoop—this is the time to splurge on a whole pint ($11). & Straw at Joan’s on Third, 8350 West Third Street, Mid-City, (323) 655-2285,; From the magazine: Game of Cones: The New L.A. Scoops That Have Won Us Over