12302 Harbor Blvd
Garden Grove, CA 92840
$ (under $15)
Sun, 01/19/2015, 1:30pm walk-in
What is italian ice one might ask? It's a combination of slushy ice with fruit or sweet flavorings produced in a similar method as ice cream, and is lighter, smoother and more refined than a snow cone. Often referred to as water ice, this frozen dessert originated from the East Coast and has been brought to the West Coast courtesy of Mike Abeyta.
Joe's Italian Ice is made in-house with fresh fruits and offers a variety of flavors, including strawberry, horchata, peanut butter cup, and Tiger's Blood (watermelon/coconut combination). The soft serve ice cream is shipped in from Pennsylvania and is creamier, denser with less aeration than most soft serves due to their ultra high temperature cooking. And if you're not in the mood for italian ice, you can order a sundae made with Dreyer's ice cream (personally, that would be a crime).
The most popular frozen dessert here is the Joe Latti ($5.24 for regular): Philadelphia italian ice with your choice of flavor layered with soft serve ice cream. Below is the strawberry Joe Latti. My favorite dish. The strawberry is definitely sweet and goes well with the dense soft serve. If you think you simply have a cup full of italian ice, well, surprise....you'll find out that at the bottom of the cup is another layer of soft serve! So delicious!
From left to right: strawberry, mango tango, tiger's blood. You could undoubtedly taste the mango in the mango tango and it was less sweet than the strawberry. The tiger's blood was good and reminded me of a jolly rancher in ice form.
Overall, Joe's Italian Ice and Ice Cream is pretty darn good. It's very similar to Rita's Italian Ice which is located in Santa Monica and has multiple locations throughout Southern California. Joe's is quite small, has a window for ordering and picking up and is cash only. There are a few bar stools available for outdoor seating and nothing indoors. If you want to tread from the usual ice cream and cake desserts, Italian ice with soft serve is definitely a refreshing way to finish off a meal.