“Have you tried the chorizo?” It’s not the usual question I hear when approaching the counter of a new ice cream parlor, even in Williamsburg, where it’s always best to expect the unexpected. But then, Odd Fellows, which just opened on Kent Avenue, is not your usual purveyor of delicious frozen treats. Because although Odd Fellows looks pretty ordinary at first glance (at second and third glance you begin to notice strange little details in the decor…), the man churning out your dessert is none other than Sam Mason, former pastry master at the experimental food mecca wd-50 and currently one of the city’s most creative chefs.
So when you’re asked about the chorizo at Odd Fellows–more specifically, the Chorizo Caramel Swirl–the correct answer is: “No… but I’d like to, please.” Because really, this is one of the best scoops of parlor-made ice cream I’ve had all year. The base here is Mason’s remarkable Battenkill Sweet Cream, with the sausage folded right in (judiciously applied, just enough to add a few spicy, smokey notes; as Mason told Serious Eats, “I want to go subtle with it…It is meat, after all”) run through with sticky caramel. Spend the extra buck on the housemade waffle cone, by the way. It is totally worth it.
Odd-sounding flavors aside–there’s also a Maple Bacon Pecan on the menu right now, and Cornbread, which is actually similar to Christina Tosi’s Corn Cookies at Milk–the ice cream here at Odd Fellows is refreshingly old fashioned: rich and creamy, not too dense, satisfyingly sweet. And the simpler flavors may even be better than that the more esoteric attention-grabbers.
My scoop of Chocolate Chunk was excellent, and next time will be paired with Mason’s Burnt Caramel. In fact, I ate a full scoop or a sample spoon of nearly the entire Odd Fellows menu (there are a currently a pair of refreshing sorbets here, too, a Mango and a Lychee), and enjoyed every bite. And the space itself is fun, spacious, and comfortable, making it kind of no-brainer for Williamsburg locals, and worth a visit for everyone else passing through.
Odd Fellows Ice Cream Parlor is located on Kent Avenue between N4th and N3rd Streets, and is open Sunday through Thursday from 12:00 noon to 10:00 p.m., and on Friday and Saturday until 11:00 p.m. More info and a look at the most recent Odd Fellows menu of flavors can be found on their website.