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Sundaes in the Summer …at Anna Lee’s Cookies and Cream
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Sundaes in the Summer …at Anna Lee’s Cookies and Cream

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anna lee's mixed berry shortcake sundae

The mixed berry shortcake sundae at Anna Lee's Cookies and Cream earned the highest score of any sundae so far this summer. No berry lover should be without it.

I have said it before, and I will say it again: I always love a great surprise. I had never heard of Anna Lee’s Cookies and Cream and didn’t know what to expect upon arrival, but a few friends strongly recommended it to me, and I decided to feature it here as the next stop in my Sundaes in the Summer column. I’m so glad I did.

The storefront is completely unassuming, located in a strip mall in Mays Landing among a scattering of other businesses. Once inside, there is a folksy charm to the store, enhanced by a seriously friendly and helpful staff, who really go out of their way to make sure your experience is a positive one. The woman who took my order spent at least five minutes with me discussing various tempting options until we ultimately settled on a berry shortcake sundae made with Raspberry Truffle ice cream, sponge cake pieces, strawberry sauce, whipped cream and a cherry. Here is what I thought of it:

The Concept: Strawberry shortcake is one of my favorite desserts on the planet, but I have never attempted an ice cream version of it. When it was suggested that I could create a mixed berry version by subbing out a raspberry ice cream in place of the strawberry, I was sold.

The Ice Cream: Anna Lee’s uses Bassett’s Ice Cream, which is one of the best, if not THE best local brands in existence. The high butterfat content gives it a lush mouthfeel of incredible creaminess, and you really can’t go wrong with any of their flavors. That said, before deciding, we did a bit of sampling, and the Raspberry Truffle came out as the clear winner with its combo of vanilla ice cream swirled with raspberry sauce and mixed with raspberry-filled chocolate truffles. This laid the perfect berry-themed foundation for my sundae and the truffles, in particular, were just a superb addition.

The Cake: Soft, squishy vanilla sponge cake made for a great textural counterbalance, as even the best ice cream can get repetitive after a few spoonfuls. The cake had excellent flavor, too, and really added to the sundae overall.

The Sauce: Anna Lee’s makes a lot of their toppings and baked goods in house, including the strawberry sauce that was absolutely divine. Featuring big chunks of strawberry in a sweet and decadent compote-like sauce, the combo of this with the raspberry ice cream made for a berry lover’s dream-come-true.

The Whipped Cream: Any great strawberry shortcake has to come loaded up with whipped cream, and such was the case here. Homemade and delicious, blending strawberries and cream together has been a no brainer for years, and it’s easy to see why.

The Bottom Line: I can’t say enough good things about this sundae and Anna Lee’s in general. The sundae was utterly fabulous, and if you are even vaguely a fan of strawberry shortcake or anything berry-flavored, I implore you to try it. It may just be the best-tasting ice cream sundae I have had so far in my travels. While we are on the subject of trying things at Anna Lee’s, they gave me a sample of one of their peanut butter cookies, and I was stunned at how good it was. One can only imagine what kind of peanut butter sundae masterpiece could be concocted with these.

The Score: 9.7

Anna Lee’s Cookies and Cream is located at 800 Route 50 in Mays Landing. Go to AnnaLeesCookiesAndCream.com.

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