While technology can be great at times, it doesn’t know everything. Sometimes the human memory wins out. None of the locals we asked even knew this place existed. I knew that I found ice cream in that spot before, so I put on my most confident strut and was relieved when we saw a bunch of folks with cones. In honor of the name, I had a Strawberry cone. Sam got Grapenut.
There is a reason that none of the locals know that this place exists. It is really meant to serve the tourist portion of town as Strawberry Alley is located in the Jefferson House – part of the Strawberry Bank Museum. It also conveniently caters to the crowds that gather for all of the summer events in Prescott Park, just across the street. The museum is a Colonial-themed historical re-enactment with most of the homes in their original site right near the harbor. Think Williamsburg without the rollercoasters or fair food… maybe just think Sturbridge Village by the sea.
For some reason, I always thought that the ice cream parlor didn’t come about until the 1950’s, but the museum has been running this through Portsmouth summers for years. They don’t require these employees to wear period garb, so it really is a moment out of time. I’ll forgive these transgressions for the sake of ice cream, though ideally, I would make the ice cream using colonial methods and make that an interactive exhibit (we could use freezers for storage).
My dreams of antiquely homemade ice cream are dashed as soon as I see the Annabelle’s sign. They don’t even make the ice cream here. Annabelle’s delivers it to them from just down the street. The options here are limited to around a dozen, and most of the flavors are pretty conventional. The realization of where I am makes me remember an edict that I issued to myself that when I go somewhere that has got something special in their name, that I should just go for that. Strawberry calling.
The ice cream was off though. Maybe the fact that this ice cream doesn’t sell at the clip it does at Annabelle’s itself and thus wasn’t as fresh was the whole of the issue. However, it seemed off. The cream had bitten the tang of strawberry off, and the results were a pinkish cream. The strawberry pieces showed the effect of refreeze as well. Leads me to another of those get it where they make it decrees that I need to adhere to more.
This place is really a scoop shop. All that is offered are three sizes of cones, with the option to upgrade to a waffle cone or add sprinkles. There’s nowhere to sit, but as long as the weather allows, the gardens of Prescott Park are right across the street or you can walk all the way to the water’s edge.
Cone – kiddie $2.25 regular $2.60 large $3.25
Strawberry Alley – The Strawberry Bank Museum Ice Cream Shop
Marcy St, Portsmouth NH 03802-0300