Appetizers

Open Nature pleases with flavorful ice cream

Open Nature super premium ice cream is now in Safeway stores. The Salted Caramel Butter Pecan was a hit with taste testers.
Open Nature super premium ice cream is now in Safeway stores. The Salted Caramel Butter Pecan was a hit with taste testers.

Salty, sweet and nutty; that’s a winning combination.

Among the four flavors sampled of new Open Nature super premium ice cream (now at Safeway stores), the Salted Caramel Butter Pecan was a pure standout.

We waited until triple-digit temperatures for this first taste test of summer ice creams to make sure our testers were in a receptive mood. Maybe it was the heat and we all craved a little salt.

But the combination of slightly salty caramel ribbons, plentiful pecans and creamy ice cream would be a winner in any weather. The tasting notes gave it high marks for “good texture,” “very good rich caramel,” “big crunchy pecans” and the highest praise: “I would buy that.”

Also getting spoons up was Open Nature’s classic Chocolate. The tasters said, “A good basic chocolate; not too rich, not too sweet,” “very cocoa” and “like rocky road with no bumps.”

Open Nature’s Strawberries & Cream could have used bigger chunks of fruit, but had a good balance of flavor. The straight Vanilla was very creamy although a bit bland. Also in the line-up are Coffee and Swiss Almond.

Overall, Open Nature – which uses only natural ingredients and no artificial flavorings – compared well with other super premium brands. Suggested retail price is $2.99 to $3.99 per pint, available now at Safeway stores throughout the Sacramento area.

Debbie Arrington: (916) 321-1075, @debarrington

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