Cover photo: Matthew Hinton
Let’s be honest, New Orleans is hot. Snowball stands are open almost year-round and anytime I can get my hands on a cool treat, I’m in.
Here’s a list of places we’ve discovered to cool off and satisfy your sweet tooth!
In the heart of the Bywater on St. Roch Street is a “secret” doorbell. When you ring it, out pop Jesse Reilly, owner of Big O’s Original Pops and the creator of this funky little doorbell that delivers cold, sweet treats on hot days. Reilly does his best to make his pops with local produce and keeps the flavors rotating and innovative, all while supporting local businesses.
Popstars Icicle Treats are supercool fresh flavor infusions that are handcrafted and flash frozen. These tasty popsicles come in a variety of unique, layered flavors and they’re sure to hit the spot on a hot summer’s day. Chef Neal Swidler first started crafting Popstars shortly after Hurricane Katrina; he saw the popsicles as a way to cure the homesick blues while “exiled” in Phoenix. The concept started with a simple mold and expanded from there.
Seventh Ward Ice Cream Speakeasy is churning out frozen custard for a good cause. What began as a “glorified lemonade-stand,” has become an all-out phenomenon with Chef Rahn Broady at its helm. Broady has been in the custard game for years and he’s always had a passion for creating good food and teaching others how to do the same. His 7th Ward spot is cranking out pints of ice cream in unusual flavors, and using the profits to further students’ education and reinvest into the community.
Tapeh’s Water Ice, located at 1624 Newton St. in Algiers, is owned by former NFL player, Thomas Tapeh and economic developer, Derrick Martin. Water ice is a tasty dessert that’s big in the east, especially in Philadelphia. The finely granulated concoction is blended with flavor throughout and scoops and eats like ice cream. It melts slowly and makes for the perfect treat on a hot day. Tapeh’s uncle originally started making and selling water ice out of his house, and Tapeh and Martin had the idea to bring it to New Orleans and spread a bit of east coast culture to the Gulf south.
There are a lot of things about Chance in Hell Snowballs that set it apart from the many other wonderful snoball stands in New Orleans. One thing that is exceptional about this business is the fact that it is so ecologically and socially aware. Right off the bat, you will notice a sign indicating that nearly all of the flavors are vegan, including the cream flavors. This is because they use coconut cream instead of dairy! Another sign indicates that absolutely everything in your hand is compostable. They even provide a compost bin for easy disposal.
Stricen Carter’s stand at 4202 South Carrollton Avenue boasts crazy flavors filled to the brim with treats. Her stand brings snowballs to the next level, by packing them with cheesecake, candy and cookies, and these photo-worthy designer deserts have been taking Instagram by storm.