Who grew up eating this wonderful concoction? Doesn’t matter what you called it, but it was fabulous and yummy…it still is. Whoever was the first person to add flavored syrup to frozen water was a genius…try to prove me wrong; you can’t.
There are various ways to make it and tons of different toppings you can put on it and I have eaten all the variations in different parts of the country and they all hold wonderful memories for me whenever I think about it. Come, take a stroll down memory lane with me…
My first experience was around the corner from my grandmother’s house….italian water ice (in Philly it’s pronounced wooder) from Tony’s. Lemon is my favorite. We would go around the corner to get it and then bring it home and sit on the stoop to eat it with the little wooden spoon it came with, watching the kids play in the fire hydrant that some neighborhood father was able to open up. I was too small to play with the bigger kids, but I did try to sneak in the back to catch some of the spray, only to have every parent on the block yell out the window to get the baby away from the water…being the youngest is sometimes a disadvantage.
Next came the Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine. Every kid wanted one so they could make their own cone whenever they wanted. I didn’t have one, but I had friends that did. We thought they were great; but looking back on it now….what a waste of time for a sloppy mess. Some things should not be left up to kids who don’t know what they’re doing…stained clothes are a parent’s nightmare.
Flash forward several years and you will find me at Opie’s in Catonsville, Maryland. Opie’s was the place to be in the summer. A seasonal joint, we would wait for the summer opening and spend as much time as we could there until it closed with the cooler weather that fall brings. Chocolate snowball with marshmallow topping was my go-to flavor and it was amazing. Luckily, my youth group leaders loved it just as much as we did…so you could usually find us there on a Wednesday night or a Sunday afternoon.
Which brings us to present day in Hawaii with shave ice. I say this with a pure heart, even though my sister will try to fight me….SHAVE ICE IS DA BEST!!! The ice is finer, they have tropical syrups with all the other flavors and the things that you can add to them are ono!!! There are shave ice places all over the place here, but my favorite hands down is Coconut Girls and Boys on Kamehameha Hwy. in Kaaawa. (yes, the spelling is correct lol) The owner, Tracey, is so warm and friendly. Greeting you with an Aloha and ready to talk story. I try something different every time we go and she knows this, just like she knows Neil will usually only go for the strawberry with vanilla ice cream. We drove around the island last Thursday and of course stopped in. My choice? Coconut ice cream, pineapple shave ice and coconut condensed milk on top…can anyone say pina colada?!?! You can’t miss them, a cute little shack in front of their house. If you ever get to go, tell Tracey that Tracie sent you.
So, yeah, frozen ice and flavored syrup has been a big part of my life. And it always will be. So many memories are made when you hang out slurping on some frozen yumminess. Next time you’re with friends and its summertime, go grab a snow cone and take your own walk down memory lane.
***Question for the comments…do you like italian water ice, sno cones, snow ball and shave ice? What’s your favorite flavor and topping? And where’s your favorite place to go?
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