The third generation of Brocatos continues to perform a miracle. After over a century, it makes ice creams that taste exactly the way they did the first time you tried them, no matter how old you are. Everything they sell, from the ice creams and ices to the cookies and biscotti, is made right there in the Mid-City shop. Nothing could be more refreshing on a summer day. Or a winter day, for that matter. It's perfect after a Chinese meal or any other time you need a simple but great dessert.
Angelo Brocato made ice cream for most of his life, beginning ate age twelve in Palermo. He was one of thousands of Sicilians emigrants to New Orleans around the turn of the 19th century. After working odd jobs for awhile he opened his Sicilian-style ice cream parlor on Ursulines Street in the French Quarter in 1905. From that day to this, Angelo Brocato's has always made all its own ice cream, using flavors imported from Palermo. In the 1980s it moved its operation to its present location in Mid-City.
Although they didn't move there until about thirty years ago, the Carrollton Avenue ice cream parlor looks as if it has been there for the full 112 years of Brocato's history. It moves at the pace of long ago, mainly because of its popularity. The wood-framed glass cases reveal cheesecakes, candies and cookies, and espresso and cappuccino.
Never go to Angelo Brocato's in a hurry. That wouldn't be right, anyway. Take home a bag of cookies and biscotti, which are wonderful with your coffee the rest of the week.