Rita’s Water Ice

Am I the only one who’s never heard of Rita’s? Apparently it’s an Italian ice/frozen custard franchise that’s allllll over the east coast, and is now popping up on the best coast as well (CA, NV, UT, AZ). When I heard a foodie friend talk about how it had opened in La Canada (which is nearby-ish), I wanted to check it out.

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The store had 12 flavors of Italian (water) ice, though the website boasts 40 (!) flavors, so perhaps they rotate out their flavors. It also had 6 flavors of frozen custard– vanilla, chocolate, vanilla-chocolate twist, strawberry, light vanilla, and strawberry-light vanilla twist. Once again, the website has more flavors. Check them out here.

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Rita’s is best known for the Gelati, which is a layering of frozen custard on the bottom of the cup, Italian ice in the middle, and topped with more frozen custard. You can read all the descriptions of their options above, but I got the Gelati with “Alex’s lemonade” Italian ice and vanilla custard. [[Read about who “Alex” is here— Rita’s partners with a charity dedicated to finding a cure for childhood cancers– pretty cool.]]

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I was actually surprised by how delicious it was. I’ve had both frozen custard and Italian ice in the past, but the combination was pretty ridic. The Italian ice was similar to shave ice (the legit kind, not an icy snow cone), and the vanilla frozen custard was kind of like a McDonald’s vanilla cone… but creamier. And better.

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La Canada is in the boonies (sorry to all my LC friends– I know ya’ll have crazy LC pride), but there’s also a few more locations in SoCal, including Santa Monica, listed on their website here. I’m definitely going back. Maybe tomorrow.