The Heights finally gets its own old-time ice cream parlor — and it's bringing foodie buzz
Set to open this May or June in a vintage 19th Street garage between Shepherd and Durham, the upcoming parlor is a hallmark moment for husband-and-wife owners Jarvis and Sarah Johnston, who've envisioned a proper old-fashioned ice cream shop since launching their business in 2010.
"Fat Cat actually started with a late night conversation with friends about how crazy it was that the Heights didn't have a classic ice cream parlor."
"You can't believe how excited we are to finally have a retail space," Sarah Johnston tells CultureMap. "Fat Cat actually started with a late night conversation with friends about how crazy it was that the Heights didn't have a classic ice cream parlor.
"And now we'll have one of our own."
For the past several years, Johnston and her husband have been crafting unique, small-batch ice cream at a kitchen in the Kraftsmen building on 22nd Street, only blocks from their new location. Using dairy and eggs sourced exclusively from local farms, Fat Cat has secured a strong foodie following thanks to retailers like Revival Market, Relish Fine Foods and Catalina Coffee.
Fat Cat will expand its regular offerings at the parlor, offering eight to 10 varieties of hard-batch ice cream. Five flavors will be constant, with at least one dairy-free option. Three to five seasonal flavors will rotate throughout the year.
And there will even be soft-serve, along with homemade sodas, ice cream floats, sundaes and malts.
"We're also planning a full line of nostalgic novelty items," Johnston says.
"We'll be working with some other local bakers to make things like ice cream sandwiches. There will also be bon-bons, push-up pops and 99s — which are these classic British treats that have a piece of candy in the middle of them. That one's for Jarvis, really . . . He's from England."
While 19th Street will still have Menchie's Frozen Yogurt for health-conscious dessert lovers and the quirky Cricket's Creamery for gelato, Fat Cat's brick-and-mortar parlor is a welcome addition to an old-time neighborhood short on old-time ice cream.