Best Bets

The McDonald family enjoys cold treats at La Michoacana. From left, Robb, James Graham, Trey McDonald and their parents Dupree and Will McDonald.

Photo by Michael Donahue

The McDonald family enjoys cold treats at La Michoacana. From left, Robb, James Graham, Trey McDonald and their parents Dupree and Will McDonald.

PHOTOs BY MICHAEL DONAHUE/The Commercial Appeal
The Mexican Cake ice cream at La Michoacana will satisfy any sweet tooth.

Photo by Michael Donahue

PHOTOs BY MICHAEL DONAHUE/The Commercial Appeal The Mexican Cake ice cream at La Michoacana will satisfy any sweet tooth.

I already had ordered a cup of butter pecan ice cream when I was given a sample of Mexican Cake ice cream at La Michoacana. I knew I had to go back some day and get a big dish of it. It’s a blend of cake and ice cream and other flavors that just kept bursting every time I took a bite.

On my next trip to La Michoacana, I introduced Mexican Cake to other customers.

“This is insane,” said Christian Marriner, after he tried it. He loved it.

“It almost tastes like a Girl Scout cookie,” said Will McDonald, who was at La Michoacana with his wife and sons.

In addition to the Mexican Cake, I tried samples of other La Michoacana delights. They make their own homemade ice cream as well as paletas, which are fruit or cream bars.

Lesley Stevenson is a fan of the paletas. Her favorites are the strawberry kiwi and the strawberries and cream.

I decided to concentrate on the ice cream and save the paletas for another day.

Rafael Gonzalez, who is part of the family-owned business, said Mexican Cake is a blend of chocolate, cream and strawberry jelly with chocolate sprinkles on top. His brother, Ari, came up with that recipe. Rafael came up with the Germany. He likes German chocolate cake, but he doesn’t like the chocolate part.

“The chocolate is too much for me,” he said. So, he created an ice cream based on the cake, but with vanilla instead of chocolate.

I tried a sample. It was insane.

I asked Rafael to tell me his favorite La Michoacana ice cream. He likes to blend the rum and raisin ice cream with the tequila ice cream. Neither of them have alcohol in them.

I tried a sample of that. I was blown away.

Their dad, Alberto Gonzalez, learned to make ice cream in Tocumbo, Michoacan, Rafael said. Ice cream making is popular in Michoacan, Rafael said. His dad owned an ice cream business in their hometown of Chihuahua before moving to the United States.

Their house in Chihuahua was above the store, so Rafael always was going downstairs to try ice cream. Other ice cream makers from Michoacan would visit the store and give him some of their tips in making ice cream.

Rafael and his two brothers learned to make ice cream by watching their dad, who didn’t write down recipes. Rafael still eats ice cream every day because he constantly samples their product.

If you want to switch from sugar to salt and from cold to warm, try the elote. It’s corn shaved off the cob, mayonnaise, cheese, butter and chili powder.

It’s insane.

La Michoacana is at 4091 Summer, 901-555-1234; and at 6075 Winchester in the Hickory Ridge Mall, 901-795-8844.

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