Clever Cream

Snookelfritz ice cream puts the season's best in a carton

Chicago's artisan food scene got a boost when Nancy Silver returned to town last fall.

After five years in California, the Charlie Trotter's-trained pastry chef–and ice cream expert–is back in action, turning out pint after pint of intriguing local flavors.

Snookelfritz, her line of frozen treats, is anything but vanilla. Silver relies almost exclusively on products from Green City Market farmers: Kilgus Farmstead milk and eggs, Ellis Farms rhubarb, Capriole goat cheese. And she combines ingredients in the clever way you'd expect based on her culinary background.

Bron's Bees honey nougat adds crunch to ice cream flavored with roasted Klug farm strawberries; the rhubarb is paired with crème fraiche in a tart sherbet. Nichol's Farm rosemary lends a bold herbal flavor to silky honey-goat cheese ice cream.

Silver makes avocado sherbet for Big Star's new avocado milkshake ($4), and both the cookies and the ice cream for The Violet Hour's new ice cream sandwich selection. The current rotation ($5) features three petite sandwiches. Pistachio ice cream layered between two crumbly, shortbread-like butter cookies is a highlight.

Find cartons of Snookelfritz at Chicago's Downtown Farmstand and on Saturdays at the Green City Market–but be warned, like the Hoosier Mama pie stand, she tends to sell out early.