Like many people, Brian Smith fell in love with ice cream. Not just eating it but also making it. That's why the former screenwriter teamed up with his wife Jackie Cuscuna to open what is now one of the most popular ice cream businesses in Brooklyn, Ample Hills Creamery.
Ater opening their hugely successful first location in Prospect Heights, they have been able to expand in and around Brooklyn thanks to a fundraiser led by their tech-investor neighbor Charlie O'Donnell. Now they have eight locations in New York City and a ninth opening in Jersey City soon.
Of course, their employees are also a big part of the family. They call them Amployees and some have been working and scooping with them from day one. And we imagine Brian and Jackie's two kids are quite pleased with their parents' success - especially since it revolves around ice cream.
We all love ice cream, but Ample Hills ice cream is better than most. They make all their ice cream from scratch (not using a pre-made base like most ice cream shops) and pasteurize the milk themselves. This allows them to be incredibly inventive and playful with their flavors. One of their most popular is the Salted Crack Caramel, which as you can imagine is intensely addicting.
Don't overlook the Ooey Gooey Butter Cake, modeled after the classic St. Louis confection or the Snap, Mallow Pop! which is the childhood favorite rice krispie treat in ice cream form. And each store has some special exclusive choices like our favorite It Came From Gowanus! which is a dark as night chocolate ice cream with all the candy you can imagine. All the mix-ins and brittles are also made in house.
In addition to storefronts, Ample Hills has expanded to many of the local food halls and have seasonal outposts in places like Brooklyn Bridge Park and Jacob Riis Park.
All of Ample Hills' shops are a place for the community to come together. They create many collaborative ice cream flavors with nearby business like Meckelburg's (babka ice cream) and Four & Twenty Blackbirds (ice cream pie!!!). And they provide an interactive environment for neighborhood kids and parents to enjoy together. Get a look at their ice cream making bicycle at the original location.
Their Gownaus location will be a delicious refreshing stop on our upcoming Pup Crawl on August 23. Learn more about their community work and maybe get a taste of their spectacular ice cream. And if Fido is luck (and you don't order chocolate), maybe he'll get to lick the bowl.
Ample Hills Creamery
305 Nevins Street,
Brooklyn, NY 11215