Temperatures in Denver this summer have hit near-historic highs with 65 days over 90 degrees at the Denver airport station — the second-most on record for a single year — including a 15-day streak of 90+ degree heat — the eighth-longest streak in the record books. These high temperatures call for creative ways to cool off and what better way is there to cool off than with a frozen dessert? Below you’ll find 12 unique dessert shops that offer frozen treats to help you cool off.
Where: 3350 Brighton Blvd, Denver
When: Thursday – Saturday, 4:30 – 9:30 p.m.
The Lowdown: The dessert shop is one of Bryan Dayton’s newest concepts located in The Source. Melted’s signature item is a traditional Thai ice cream sandwich made with a milk bun from MELTED’s neighbor – Reunion Bakery – topped with Thai ice tea flavored ice cream, condensed milk and peanuts.
Where: Find HipPOPs on Instagram
When: Hours vary
The Lowdown: HipPOPs creates handcrafted gelato bars out of a food truck for a premium, chef-inspired, frozen dessert that’s a perfect summer treat. Every bar is individually handcrafted at its local creamery using high-quality, natural ingredients from local vendors. Customize your pop by choosing your gelato or sorbet, dip and toppings to create hundreds of unique combinations. Vegan, gluten-free and Kosher options are available.
Where: 3500 E Colfax Ave Unit B, Denver and 2712 S Havana St Unit A, Aurora
When: Thursday – Sunday, 3 – 8 p.m.
The Lowdown: Rolled ice cream has emerged as a popular and fun cold treat and Milkroll offers the best of the frozen goodness at its Denver and Aurora locations. The rolled treat is created by pouring sweet cream onto an extremely cold surface where it is then scraped into rolls of frozen goodness and topped with delicious toppings like whipped cream, fruit, chocolate or cereal.
Where: 9935 East Colfax Ave, Aurora
When: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. daily
The Lowdown: Third Culture was created to showcase unique desserts inspired by the childhood treats from Indonesia and Taiwan that chef Sam Butarbutar and Wenter Shyu grew up with. Home of the Mochi Muffin — an original dessert inspired by something Butarbutar’s mom used to make — Third Culture was born out of a desire to create something new that remains culturally relevant, tells a story of nostalgia and sparks conversation.
Where: 1930 S Havana St #5-6, Aurora
When: Monday – Saturday, 12 – 9 p.m. and Sunday, 4 – 9 p.m.
The Lowdown: Snowl offers traditional Japanese desserts including snow bowls, boba and Taiyaki — a Japanese fish-shaped cake stuffed with red bean paste, cheese, chocolate or custard. Taiyaki is made using regular pancake or waffle batter that is poured into a fish-shaped mold. The filling is then put on one side and the mold is closed. It is then cooked on both sides until golden brown. At Snowl, Taiyaki is served with ice cream and toppings to give it several layers of texture.
Where: 9686 E Arapahoe Rd. Unit B, Greenwood Village
When: Sunday – Thursday, 12 – 8 p.m. and Friday – Saturday, 12 – 9 p.m.
The Lowdown: There are over 1,500 Happy Lemon locations globally that serve bubble tea made with freshly squeezed lemon juice, grapefruit, strawberries, avocado, mint leaves and other natural ingredients. You can’t go wrong with a classic milk tea or smoothie on a hot day. They even have a salted cheese series that riffs on the internet sensation.
Neveria La Mexicana
Where: 8890 E Colfax Ave., Denver and 7506 E 36th Ave., Denver.
When: Monday – Friday 12:30 – 8 p.m. and Saturday – Sunday 12 – 8:30 p.m.
The Lowdown: Neveria La Mexicana has plenty of dessert options to cool you off this summer. The most famous treat is known as chamango — or mangonada — and is an eclectic blend of mango, chamoy, lime and chile powder. If that’s a little too adventurous for your taste buds you can also order a simple scoop, cone or banana split.
Where: 1147 S Federal Blvd., Denver
When: Monday – Friday 8 a.m. – 9 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
The Lowdown: This Vietnamese chain boasts a large menu of fresh and authentic Chè dessert drinks, crisp boba milk teas, signature Vietnamese coffees, real fruit smoothies and exotic juices. The shop combines offerings and flavors like avocado, boba, taro and pandan jelly to create incredibly unique textures and flavor combinations.
Happy Cones Co.
Where: 5505 W 20th Ave, Edgewater
When: Monday – Thursday 12 – 9:30 p.m., Friday 12 – 10 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.
The Lowdown: Happy Cones is a New Zealand style creamery operating out of the Edgewater Public Market and a food truck. New Zealand style ice cream is created by mixing fresh sweet cream ice cream and a scoop of fruit, made to order in a New Zealand made machine. In New Zealand, it is known as “real fruit ice cream.” The creamery serves up many flavors that resemble soft-serve and are perfect for a hot summer day.
Where: Multiple locations
When: Hours vary by location
The Lowdown: Gelato Boy’s gelato is naturally healthier than ice cream due to the lower fat and sugar content. By using organic dairy and cane sugar for the traditional gelato and a blend of coconut and oats for the vegan and dairy-free flavors Gelato Boy is able to create an authentic and delicious gelato that’s as close to Italian gelato you can get without a passport.
Sherry’s Soda Shoppe
Where: 2716 Welton St, Denver
When: Tuesday – Thursday and Sunday 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. and Friday – Saturday 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.
The Lowdown: Sherry’s Soda Shoppe is an old fashioned creamery with a modern twist. It features both dairy and vegan ice cream, as well as flavor combinations that showcase favorite pastry items bringing a bit of New York nostalgia to Denver.
Where: 1525 N Raleigh St Ste 110, Denver
When: 2 – 9 p.m. daily
The Lowdown: Sugar High is one of the newest dessert shops in Denver offering hot mini doughnuts, shakes and rolled ice cream. If you’re feeling a bit healthier, you can also build your own smoothie. The space even has a flower wall that makes the perfect background for your dessert photos.