It is the firm opinion of LoHi’s Little Man Ice Cream that when you enter summer, you leave your diet behind. Ok, so they didn’t exactly come out and tell me that. But last Saturday morning, after a stack of buttery pancakes under banana nut ice cream, then a few more with butterscotch gelato, then another round with salted Oreo, it was kind of an unspoken understanding that calorie-counting wasn’t welcome at that particular creamery.
Not that there’s anything especially traditional about flapjacks a la mode. The staff at Little Man just thought it sounded nice on a sunny weekend morning. According to kitchen manager Loren Martinez, “We were like, ‘We’re an ice cream shop, let’s put some ice cream on top.”
The rest is warm, fluffy history. From 9-11 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday until the end of the summer, Little Man will offer all the scratch-made pancakes you care to eat with all the ice cream you care to bury them in. A few bucks more gets you orange juice and bacon.
“We’re a neighborhood, and we wanted something where the neighbors come together, and just like old times, have some flapjacks together,” Martinez continued.
He says the pancake breakfast is a mellow turn for Little Man. With a midnight closing time, frequent live music and lines that wrap around the block, the neighborhood ice cream joint actually gets pretty thumping on a Saturday night. But the pancake breakfast is an easygoing affair, a place to bring the kids and the dog, to mingle with the neighbors or just ride out a hangover among globs of buttermilk batter bubbling on an outdoor stove and the smell of melting gelato mixed with maple syrup.
And while that won’t do anything for your inner cardiologist, but at least you can chow down for a cause. Little Man donates to local community centers, elementary schools, hospitals and other organizations. Even abroad, the Scoop for Scoop program gives the equivalent of one scoop of rice and beans to a needy child overseas for every scoop of ice cream sold. But Martinez says Little Man has always been in the business of community gathering. Almost every day of the week it hosts a live band, movie night or poetry slam.
Stroll down to Lower Highland’s giant milk jug for employee Lauren Camach’s personal batter recipe, to see if someone will beat the running 75 pancake record or to catch the live bluegrass band that shows up on Sundays.
And if you’re still worried about your diet, don’t worry. You’ll feel better after a few more flapjacks.