Summer in Charlottesville can be brutal, and this year is no exception (our car’s temperature display read 104 degrees last week!). Relief comes in many forms, but, let’s be honest, an icy, frozen treat on a scorching day is the ultimate refresher. Whether it’s a guacamole sundae at La Flor Michoacana or a boozy “poptail” from Vitae Spirits, here are some cool local hot spots where the experts will help you beat the heat.
The Juice Place
While a smoothie from this juice shop on the Downtown Mall is certainly refreshing, the coolest kids know to order their smoothie in popsicle form. All of The Juice Place’s smoothie flavors (made with organic fruits and vegetables and no refined sugar) are turned into a healthy popsicle for $2. Try mango orange for a bright kick, or the creamy vegan fudgsicle made of cacao, banana and agave.
La Flor Michoacana
A scoop of homemade ice cream with a Mexican twist is a surefire way to feel refreshed on even the hottest summer days. La Flor Michoacana offers dozens of ice cream options and more than 50 flavors of paletas, popsicles made of fresh fruit and water or milk. At $2 a scoop, you can load up on ice cream flavors such as guava, rum raisin and pistachio. Looking for something quirkier? Try the guacamole ice cream with lime, avocado, coconut and cherries.
Wonderment at Snowing in Space
Drop cookies and a reservoir of more than 60 flavors of ice cream make for some sweet summer lovin’ at Wonderment Bakeshop & Creamery, which makes its ice cream and cookies from scratch. Seasonal ice cream flavors include honey lavender, strawberry basil and lemon. Our favorite? The strawberry frozen custard made from berries from Chiles Peach Orchard sandwiched between two sugar oat cookies for iced-out bliss.
Prince Michel Vineyard & Winery
Frozen margaritas are a standard go-to, but what about frozen wine? Prince Michel Vineyard & Winery boasts a wine slushie machine that churns out glasses of frozen peach bellini and red sangria for the refined slushie drinker. These babies are offered at both Carter Mountain Orchard and the winery’s Leon, Virginia, location. Pro tip: Mix the two flavors together for the ultimate sweet boozy treat.
This popsicle joint got its name from a frequent mispronunciation of its hometown: Wytheville. Its all-natural, handmade, locally sourced frozen treats are a staple at City Market in the summer. Owners Matt and Tessie Temple met in Charlottesville, and they make the pilgrimage every week to sell their popular pops with rotating flavors including mango, strawberry orange, blueberry lemonade, raspberry hibiscus and watermelon. Wiffle Pops creates custom orders as well, so get creative: How about cantaloupe dill?
The burger joint on 14th Street offers the typical milkshake flavors but with a 21- and-over twist. The Raspberry and Cream shake features black raspberry liqueur, and the Rumplemint, spiked with Rumple Minze, will also wet your whistle. Feel free to ask the bartender to add booze to any of the more traditional shakes too: A staff favorite is adding Rumple Minze to the Cookies N Cream.
The craft distillery on Henry Avenue is known for its rum, gin and cordials, but it’s now getting into the summertime spirit (er, spirits). Vitae just launched a series of “poptails” using its alcoholic bounty—basically frozen cocktails on a stick. The initial line of flavors —piña colada, Modern Grape and orange dreamsicle—are sold at the tasting room, and future flavor suggestions are welcome.