Some good licks

Test Kitchen

May 02, 2007|By Renee Enna | Renee Enna,Chicago Tribune

The season of ripe strawberries is still a few weeks away. In the meantime, a test of strawberry ice cream is a viable substitute. A few brands were up to the challenge, but some we tried either tasted artificial or had too little of that fresh berry flavor.

Considering that 9 is the highest score on our tasting, Haagen-Dazs' average of 8 reflects its decisive victory. Still, the value-conscious among us were impressed that second-place Breyers was considerably less expensive - it also had just 120 calories per 1/2 -cup serving. Ben & Jerry's Organic strawberry, purchased at Whole Foods Market, took third place.

Here are the results, with comments from our five judges.

Renee Enna writes for the Chicago Tribune.

FIRST PLACE

HAAGEN-DAZS

Rating: 8 points

Price: $3.99 per pint; $1 per 1 / 2-cup serving

"SUPER CREAMY; LOVE THE BERRY CRUNCH."

"INTENSE, REAL BERRY FLAVOR."

"NICE, LARGE PIECES OF BERRY."

SECOND PLACE

BREYERS

Rating: 7 points

Price: $6.29 per 1.75 quarts; 45 cents per 1 / 2-cup serving

"VERY GOOD; LOTS OF BERRY FLAVOR IN EVERY BITE."

"I CAN TASTE REAL STRAWBERRIES; SLIGHT TARTNESS - WONDERFUL."

"TART STRAWBERRY FLAVOR; WOULD LIKE MORE CREAM."

THIRD PLACE

BEN & JERRY'S ORGANIC

Rating: 6 points

Price: $4.39 per pint; $1.10 per 1 / 2-cup serving

"VERY NICE, NATURAL FLAVORS. CREAMY WITH LIGHT BERRY TASTE."

"THE ICE CREAM STANDS OUT MORE IN THIS WITH THE BERRIES SITTING BACK."

"NOT THE FRESHEST STRAWBERRY TASTE BUT NOT ARTIFICIAL, EITHER."

ALSO TASTED

Safeway Select (6 points); Edy's Grand (5 points). Products are scored on a scale of 1 to 9, with 9 being highest. Prices are based on what we paid for them at the supermarket and may reflect sales or discounts from frequent-shopper cards.

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