There are 5 ice cream shops in Huntsville – The Nutty Chocolatier, Kawartha Dairies, Yog’s, Belly and The Purple House.
The Nutty is the oldest and most established – it’s been on Main Street for years and draws in the tourists with their huge selection of ice cream, chocolates, and candy. It’s open until 11 pm in the summer allowing for treats after other events in town. They carry Nestle Ice Cream.
Yog’s used to be located on the Main Street (across from Nutty) and had every inch of their shop decorated with photos of patrons enjoying their ice cream. There were 1000s of pictures. They tehn moved just off Main Street for a fresher look (read: no more pictures). Yog’s also carries Nestle Ice Cream.
Kawartha Dairies is a recent addition. They built a huge log cabin-ish building outside of town on Highway 60 (on the way to Algonquin Park or Ottawa). They are part of Kawartha Dairies (obviously) which is a large dairy in the – you guessed it – Kawartha Lakes area. Kawartha Lakes is not in Muskoka. They obviously serve Kawartha Dairies ice cream.
Belly is a new gourmet ice cream shop this season and all of their ice cream is blended in Huntsville. They are located also on Main Street, but in a small gazebo in a tiny park. They serve local and seasonal flavours like rhubarb or Tall Trees Butter Tarts.
The Purple House opened after River Mill Park did – it’s now located just off Main Street directly across from the biggest children’s play area in Huntsville and the waterfront. It is a tiny purple house. The serve Kawartha Dairies Ice Cream.
So if you are a consumer in Huntsville looking to purchase an ice cream cone – you are in luck, you have lots of choice and a decision to make.
Do you go with Nutty Chocolatier – the original? Yet the tourist trap? Do you want the originality and quality of Belly? Two things that you pay extra for? What about Kawartha Dairies? It’s a bit of a drive out to Highway 60 and it drags people away from our downtown core but they have a huge selection. Or The Purple House? Across from the park and the waterfront? Or Yog’s that serves exactly the same ice creams as Nutty just around the block? Yet also a tradition?
It’s a hard choice. But it is the little things that make the difference to me – I don’t want Kawartha Dairies because they are a new interloper is from Lindsay or the like. Go back to where you came from with your fancy store away from the centre of town! And if I am only buying an ice cream cone – I have to stand outside – I can’t purchase in the store. Telling me as a consumer what to do never bodes well for you.
Yog’s never got past their tiny little dingy store with me. Even now that they moved, I have to wonder why they aren’t doing something to differentiate themselves from the competition.
Belly – I haven’t been to yet. It’s next on the list though. I’ve heard it is very expensive and the portions are small – but isn’t anything that claims to be gourmet? It will be an occasional treat – but I need to find a less pricey regular place.
The Purple House. Brilliant location. Supported the “Band On the Run” by giving two for one ice cream cones to racers on race day. Kawartha Dairies Ice Cream, but it’s not like Nestle’s is local. And also a frozen yogurt machine that you can make your own. So love that.
For years, our choice was The Nutty – but the portions have been shrinking, the prices rises and there is a feeling that perhaps you are not valued as a local consumer as you should be.
The Purple House welcomed us warmly when we returned to support them for supporting us in Band on the Run. Fair prices, solid selection, excellent service and good portion size. Sorry Nutty.
July 5th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary: A dumped supplier. A new place. And another important decision in my life made.