1658 W. Belmont
"Let it not be lost in the details of the night how good this ice cream was."
So we copped out and hit another milkshake place even though we're behind on our burgers. The issue was that we had a postponed visit to Kuma's planned for a couple weeks, and needed to somehow make ourselves feel productive despite eating a meal we had already blogged about (I feel like my syntax is terrible right now...is any of this making sense?). It's really not important. What is important is that Scooter's Boston milkshake was the real deal. Custard aficionados we are not, so both Nat and I had little idea what we were getting into.
The facts (available on Scooter's website) are that custard is merely ice cream made with 1.4% egg yolk and 20% butterfat. This results in a consistency that is tremendously more liquid than normal ice cream, yet still maintained a steady thickness. The Boston Shake consists of custard + hot fudge + whip cream. Not being a whip cream person, I felt like the whip plus ice cream already erring on the creamy side didn't give me much to grasp onto. Tactile experience aside, however, the shake was delicious and unique. The custard blended with the whip and hot fudge instead of separating into some Montessori depiction of the earth's layers. Perhaps there could have been a touch more hot fudge toward the bottom of the shake, but now I'm just being greedy.
Contemplating the implications
Nat ordered a vanilla oreo malt, which in some ways--being a malt traditionalist--I preferred. The vanilla/oreo joint was not simply a milkshake done thicker, but rather a confection with backbone, plentiful with malted nougats. I think Nat even surprised himself by how much he enjoyed it. In the words of us, "We will be back."
"This isn't even something I normally like."...The true highlight of the night, however, occurred earlier, when we walked into Kuma's and spotted none other than Chicago food maven and LTH Forum founder, G Wiv. After we approached G(ary) to tell him that we were LTH lurkers/posters and that we were the people behind this very blog, he was so gracious that he bought us beers and invited us to sit at the bar with him (picture: a young Roger Clemens wandering on to a baseball field only to find Nolan Ryan on the mound, willing to play some catch).
Given that it is not every day that we are invited to sit with the oracle of Chicago food, we took the opportunity talk serious shop with the man, who answered all of our burning questions, and displaying an incredibly vast knowledge. Wiv advised us on the perfect wine pairing for Schwa (the Oregon red went perfect with the Ravioli, Gary), rank ordered french fries from Italian Beef stands the city over, told us which of Chicago's finest restaurants do not charge for valet, and rattled off the subtle distinctions in BBQ technique between Lem's, Barbara Ann's, Uncle John's, and Honey 1 as if reciting Chaucer from memory. The meal at Kuma's was outstanding as always, and the chance to dine with Wiv was a bonus. Punctuating the night with Scooter's almost felt like hubris, but our work needed to be done.