Petroff and Quint outside one of their NYC shops. [Photo: BGIC]
Whether you've already sampled the phenomenon that is NYC's Big Gay Ice Cream or have just heard about its rapturous following in the Big Apple, you'll be pleased to learn they're headed to SF next week. Founders Doug Quint and Bryan Petroff, who started with a truck and now own two ice-cream shops in Greenwich Village, will make several appearances with their signature takes on soft serve. (Their last jaunt to the Bay Area was in 2010, when friend Jake Godby of Humphry Slocombe threw a "Tranny Smackdown" in their honor.)
This time around, Quint and Petroff are in town for Chipotle's big Cultivate festival in Golden Gate Park next Saturday, June 8, which is attracting other celebrated out-of-towners like Richard Blais, Ludo Lefebvre, and Jon Shook & Vinny Dotolo (not to mention homegrown talents Sarah & Evan Rich and Michael Chiarello). Big Gay Ice Cream will be renting a truck in L.A. and driving it up for the event, where they'll serve quirky flavors like the signature Salty Pimp (a vanilla soft-serve cone with dulce de leche, sea salt, and a chocolate dip; Andrew Zimmern once called it "a cone you want to be alone with"), the Bea Arthur (a vanilla cone with dulce de leche coated in crushed vanilla wafers), the Godzilla (a vanilla cone coated in crushed wasabi peas), and the Cococone (a vanilla cone coated in curried toasted coconut). They'll also be debuting some new toppings from their forthcoming cookbook, including bourbon butterscotch, whiskey walnuts, and blueberry sauce.
Quint and Petroff will be accompanied by acclaimed NYC popsicle maven La Newyorkina (a.k.a. Fany Gerson), who will offer her signature paletas in flavors like coconut, hibiscus, and chili-mango. (Those who want to learn the art of paleta-making firsthand from Gerson can take a class with her at 18 Reasons on Sunday afternoon.) The Big Gay duo will also offer on-stage cooking demos at the event, but with the help of a staff "truckstar," the soft-serve will continue to flow in their absence.
As if that wasn't enough, the Big Gay Ice Cream team is also making two more SF appearances over the weekend. They'll do a practice run the day before the festival, Friday, June 7, from 12-2 pm, outside of Heath Ceramics in the Mission. Then, on Sunday, they'll be scooping with Godby at Humphry Slocombe ("if extreme hangovers don't prevent it," says Quint) before being featured as the special guests at Godby's Truck Stop Cafe pop-up at Truck that evening. Godby will make them that edition's "killers" and serve up blue-plate specials of their last meals (the menu is still in the works). "Our only real request was a tater tot dish of some sort," says Quint. Unfortunately, Big Gay soft serve won't appear at Truck Stop, as the truck will already be on its way back to L.A. Hey, rainbows and glitter unicorns can't last forever, at least not on the left coast.