Is it Ever Okay to Spend $9 on an Ice Cream Sandwich?

On rare occasions, the answer is yes. Especially if your Brother-in-Law pays.

My brother-in-law is a glorious spendthrift. Often when he shows up with a gift or something for dinner that looks amazing I’ll ask him where he got it and how much it cost (but you know, not in a cheapskate weirdo Brian Johns way). He usually responds with the shop and then says “I didn’t notice how much it costs, but it looks good, no?” as if that’s a proper answer.

So when, over Thanksgiving, he showed up with a standing rib roast from Windsor Quality Meats (probably the cost of a 2016 Fiat) and dessert, I acted like an adult and just gratefully accepted his largesse. The meat was dynamite, as was Thomas Keller’s Leek Bread Pudding, which is ridiculous (recipe here). But the evening’s winner was dessert—a box full of ice cream sandwiches. Absent a lactose allergy (a real one backed up by a board-certified medical doctor’s note), I don’t think I’m interested in spending any time hanging out with people who don’t like ice cream sandwiches. They’re good when they’re homemade and they’re good when they’re an 18-pack from Safeway on sale for $5.50. 

But these ones from Main St’s Yum Sweet Shop were in a entirely different league. Rock hard when they emerged from the freezer, the ice cream started to soften immediately, as did the half of the sandwich that was dipped in chocolate. But unlike most homemade ones they never became a sloppy mess. They softened to just the perfect amount presumably thanks to the steadying influence of a large swath of salted caramel. And they were so perfectly rich that I, a historic glutton, only finished half of one.

So last night I headed back there on my own. I knew they weren’t going to be cheap, but I’ll be honest I didn’t think they’d be $9. I had orders from home for 6 of them, so by the time tax and tip were factored in I was over $70 deep on ice cream sandwiches. But I suppose compared to buying the best V12 engine in the world, or the most beautiful view on Bowen Island (or a crappy view in a basement by the PNE for that matter) they were a bargain.

A note: The salted caramel is still the best, the gingerbread is very excellent, the chocolate good but not great. The donut one is mostly rubbish.