Choose the best summertime sweet

By Abbie Kouzmanoff, The Dartmouth Staff | 8/1/13 9:00am

Only a few weeks left of sophomore summer remain, and its time to start choosing your desserts wisely. Where will you savor your last few ice creams of 13X?

Morano Gelato

Since it came to campus in spring 2011, Morano has been Dartmouth students’ sweet fix. Although portions are smaller than at your hometown ice cream shop, the rich flavor of the gelato makes sizes more than sufficient. A small allows you to choose two flavors, a medium affords you three and a large up to four. Stick to classic combinations such as chocolate and hazelnut or pair a darker chocolate with a fruity flavor like raspberry for a refreshing twist. Employees are generous with samples, so try out more adventurous flavors like lavender or maple before you order. Flavors run out when they run out, however, and if you arrive past 8 p.m., certain choices may no longer be available. Morano makes sure to have more of its popular flavors on hand, but fruit varieties tends to disappear quickly as they are more expensive to make.

Morano is a perfect reward after a late-night exam or for a quick treat after a film at the Nugget. In the summer, sit outside on the patio to enjoy some prime facetime as the line extends out the door. Prices are extremely reasonable for gelato, which can often sell for more than $6 dollars for a small. At Morano, you’ll pay $3.25 for a small, $4.25 for a medium and $5.50 for a large cup.

The Swirl and Pearl

Swirl and Pearl first hit Hanover during 13S and has since proved itself a strong competitor to Morano down the street. Fro-yo’s primary advantage is variety. Offering 20 flavors and over 35 toppings, the shop rotates through eight different flavors each day and often makes way for seasonal selections, including peach. Go up to the counter and ask for a sample-cup when you walk in—trying new flavors before grabbing a full-sized cup will help you make sure your money is well spent. For a more refreshing option, pair the original tart flavor or a fruity variety with fresh fruit toppings and a sprinkling of chocolate chips. Or go all out and pair more decadent flavors with a large assortment of candy.

Prices, unfortunately, are steep. Although it’s no anomaly in the world of fro-yo, the total cost never fails to shock me. For a medium-sized portion with both fruit and chocolate-y toppings, I paid $5.34. If you fill your cup one-third of the way with fro-yo and then layer a decent amount of toppings, expect to pay over $4 dollars. Hint: cups are huge to encourage you to take more and pay more—don’t fall into the trap.

While Morano works well for a post-dinner or movie endeavor, fro-yo is a great afternoon treat or weekend study break. Its outside deck invites you to relax, enjoy your creation and escape from Swirl and Pearl’s un-air-conditioned interior.

Ice Cream Fore-U

Located in West Lebanon, Ice Cream Fore-U provides the biggest bang for your buck. Portions are huge and the number of choices available is overwhelming. With over 40 flavors of hard ice cream, 24 flavors of soft serve and daily specials, combinations are limitless. A baby size is roughly equivalent to at least a generous small at most places, but a medium is well over the size of a typical large. Warning: Fore-U’s sugar cone cannot even support the weight of a large.

Prices are extremely reasonable: I paid only $1.35 for a baby twist with sprinkles. Soft serve treats cost anywhere from $1.25 to $4.00, while hard ice cream is slightly more expensive with prices ranging from $2-4. A classic twist with rainbow sprinkles is simple and satisfying, but a sundae may be worth the stomachache. Try adding marshmallow to your creation for a fluffy change of pace. If you’re confused about what flavors like “lobster tracks” actually are, look out for the signs posted describing each concoction in detail.

The stand is conveniently located next to Fore-U Golf Center’s mini golf course, so play a round after dinner and then head over for dessert. An excursion to Fore-U is the perfect summer night outing or weekend treat. Beware: the lines seem endless, and sororities are known to flock in packs.

Abbie Kouzmanoff, The Dartmouth Staff