It’s always summer here, and as such, ice cream is a year-round affair. The delicious frozen dessert has delivered happiness for hundreds of years, but received its most significant makeover by Augustus Jackson, a 19thcentury African-American confectioner who served as a White House chef while running his own catering and confection business in Philadelphia.
In 1832, he pioneered new cooling techniques for ice cream, yielding the modern version of the dessert we all enjoy today and his well-deserved title, “Father of Ice Cream.” Despite creating several amazing flavors, including butter pecan, Mr. Jackson was not able to receive or apply for any patents. Interestingly, during the 19thCentury, African-Americans ran a small monopoly on ice cream in Philadelphia, even causing riots when flavors were unavailable.
Carrying on the Jackson legacy is Mr. Cleveland Smith with Localicious Jax. Located at 4220 NW 12th St, Lauderhill, FL 33313, there are other locations planned for West Park (The West Park location is a kiosk and is currently open at 2481 SW 56th Terrace, West Park, FL 33023) Miami, and Gainesville. Cleveland Smith has been making ice-cream for 40 years and it shows in the way he adventurously tweaks classic flavors while staying true to household favorites. The ice cream is made fresh daily, characterized by a silky-buttery texture bursting with pure, memorable tastes. Cleveland created over 60 amazing flavors and churns each one fresh every day right inside the store.
I know you’re asking whether it is worth the drive and the calories, and I am here to give you a big FAT YES! Each flavor has a homemade buttery taste that you simply can’t get from Cold Stone’s, Dairy Queen or Baskin Robbins. Co-owner, Corey shared – and we agree – that one thing that has Localicious Jax standing out from the crowded field of ice creameries is the use of fresh, locally sourced ingredients.
It’s hard to pick a favorite, but my most memorable flavors were Butter Pecan, Oreo, Strawberry Cheesecake, Pistachio, Chocolate, and even the Bun and Cheese! Yes, for those of you who LOVE Jamaican cuisine, don’t sleep on the Bun and Cheese. Additionally, delicious, nondairy, gluten free and vegan flavors that are nearly indistinguishable from dairy rich were unleashed just last month! So yeah, vegans, he has you covered thanks to us. We asked and he delivered. You’re welcome!
Oh, and don’t sleep on the non-ice cream desserts. The store has a wide variety of homemade cookies, brownies and other sweets available as toppings or for separate purchase. Even the cones are made from scratch right in the store. My favorites were the French vanilla waffle and the cinnamon cones.
South Florida has top-notch ice cream, with destination spots throughout Miami, Dade, Broward and Palm Beach, but very few can touch the flavors coming out of Cleveland’s artisanal kitchen. A combination of fat and sugar can never go wrong, and in the case of vegans, he has perfected the art.
The atmosphere is beautiful with exotic colors and great service delivered by a team of uber happy ladies offering free samples to help you decide! I had the pleasure of going HAM and ordering “The Jax Pot,” a large copper container with 25 scoops of ice cream and any toppings you like! Smoke billows from the center of the presentation from blocks of dry ice used to keep the ice cream nice and cold. I can eat half of this by myself, but for normal folks, this would be more in tune with a child’s birthday party or a gathering of foodie friends on a night out.
Most of the time, I describe flavor profiles to provide readers a window into what to expect. Ice cream, however, is one of those indulgences that’s too personal for that. Although they might occasionally try flavors outside of the standards, folks like what they like.
So how about this: I strongly recommend Localicious Jax, but I’ll leave it up to you to choose your favorites, (although you honestly can’t go wrong with ANY of them.) They’re just that good. You can reach them at (954) 533-5566!
Our amazing photography is from none other than our Media Director, Mr. Korey Davis. Check him out at Korey Davis Photography @kdavisphotog for booking.