Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Ben & Jerry's Phish Food (An Ice Cream Review)

I feel like I spend so much time raving about Ben & Jerry’s Phish Food Froyo, without giving proper attention to its predecessor. Oh, I constantly tell people that “Phish Food is the best flavor ever,” but I’m really referring to my experiences with the Froyo, having only had the full-fat version once at a scoop shop in Virginia Beach.

And, since I’ve decided to gain weight (no matter how I feel about that prospect), I might as well enjoy the process. So here we are kicking it off with...

Awesome! No neon green pints here, this one’s the real-deal black rim! At first glance, it looks the same.

What I can’t show you is the first obvious difference: texture. This is MUCH harder to scoop than the froyo. That’s partly due to the ice cream itself, and partly because of the copious amounts of fudge fish that litter the container. For some reason they seem much more frequent than they are in the lighter version. The ice cream is much denser and thicker as well.

Even letting this ice cream sit out for quite a while (I ate it very slowly while doing practice problems for my final exam), it still had substantial resistance when I went to take a spoonful. The top got that creamy, melty coating, but underneath it remained almost as solid as it was in the pint. Which is great, because I can prolong the euphoric experience without worrying about licking up a puddle of melted ice cream at the end. :)

In terms of taste...well, it certainly is richer. It’s the usual B&J’s chocolate base, but in this case it’s sweeter rather than the deep flavor I usually get (and love). The marshmallow swirl seems to have permeated the entire pint, even when you can’t see it. And the fudge fish add more dark contrast, bringing a much deeper chocolate flavor than the base. And they were EVERYWHERE. No kidding, I had one spoonful with FIVE FISH. Catch of the day! The best part is, they’re not frozen rock hard (or maybe I let them thaw so long). In fact, they had the texture of room-temperature chocolate while feeling slightly cool from sitting in the ice cream. Pretty awesome.

And if you
’re wondering about the caramel, check out the very last bite:

Bottom line...I still love the froyo, and probably always will, simply because I’m a health-conscious nutso with a sweet tooth. But I’m glad I tried the real thing. Maybe it’s a symbol for something...or maybe it’s just delicious ice cream. Either way, I can now say with complete confidence that Phish Food--the real thing--is one of my all-time favorite ice cream flavors!
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