The Scoop: Franklin Fountain

Eric Berley holds a strawberry ice cream waffle cone at the Franklin Fountain, his ice cream shop in Old City.

THE DEAL: A couple of brothers run this 9-year-old-but-much-older-feeling Old City shop, where hair-netted and waxed-mustached scoopers dish out classic homemade - homemade! - flavors like black raspberry, teaberry gum and Hydrox cookie.

The details: 116 Market St., 11 a.m.-midnight Monday-Thursday, 10 a.m.-midnight Friday-Saturday; cash only; 215-627-1899,

The wait: On a busy summer night, expect to stand around in the shop for upward of 10 minutes. (It's a pleasant place to dawdle, to be sure.)

We ate: A sugar cone of chunky, crème de menthe-touched mint chocolate chip and a plain cone of simple, straightforward, divine strawberry, $4.60 each.

We wanted to eat: "The Franklin Mint," a serious sundae made with that awesome mint chip, vanilla ice cream, chocolate syrup, marshmallow glaze, crème de menthe and homemade whipped cream, $10. Or maybe a classic banana split, created from a circa-1904 recipe, $14.

And we could've drunk: From the jerks (seriously, they're called that) at the fountain, perhaps an Egyptienne egg-shake phosphate, made with orange and rose syrup, an egg topping and a single date, $5. Daring.

What we'll have next: Tomorrow, the Fountain debuts all-organic vanilla bean and strawberry, the first of their kind for Philly. Just-picked berries from Collegeville's Longview Center for Agriculture go into the strawberry. So does a hint of lemon, to make things interesting.

About that scoop: So, five bucks a scoop is steep. But trust us, this creamy stuff is not your average Breyers. And the scene alone is worth spending more. Splurge.

P.S.: Nearby Shane Confectionary (110 Market St.) also belongs to the Berley bros, who've spruced up the old place with similarly old-fashioned style. Have a Berley bar.


A summertime journey across the Philadelphia region in search of great ice cream and other frozen treats. Reported this week by Lauren McCutcheon. Have a fave we should try? Email