This morning we got up early so we could go shopping for one of the many treats that is renowned in Marianna: ice cream! Yep, as lovers of ice cream, we just had to load up with this delicious frozen concoction while the getting’ was good.
Larry and Ruth last night had treated us to some ice cream from the national award-winning ice creamery that is located just a few blocks from their house. Called the Southern Craft Creamery, it is literally a small mom and pop creamery where they take the milk and cream they collect from their dairy farm nearby, bring it to their little shop, and make some of the most fantastic ice cream we have every tasted. They only make small batches, each being 20 or so gallons and then fill pint size containers. What makes their ice cream so different is that they do not homogenize their cream. Thus, the milk fat globules remain large so the rich milk fat coats your tongue allowing the flavors to be absorbed so well and that makes the ice cream’s texture so unique.
They also are very creative in the flavors of ice cream they produce. Larry and Ruth had shared with us the Buttermilk, Salted Carmel and Sweet Potato-Praline flavors last night. After rolling our eyes in simple delight, we just had to sample some more.
Therefore, early this morning Larry and I waltzed over to the ice creamery and load up with a bunch more containers. Below is what we got and a brief description of each flavor:
Roasted Banana with Salted Peanuts – Salted peanuts and rich cream compliment sweet bananas roasted in butter and brown sugar,
Salted Dark Chocolate – The perfect pairing of sweet and salty folded into rich, dark chocolate (chocolate: French Broad Chocolates),
Butterscotch – Inspired by their Mama Elsie’s perfect butterscotch pie recipe that she lovingly passed down to them,
Raspberry Basil – Raspberry compote highlighted with sweet basil dolloped into sweet cream with a little Meyers lemon juice, combine for a deliciously aromatic flavor,
Blackberry Buttermilk – The unique buttermilk ice cream flavor is accented with the finest blackberries.
Their little creamery is Nirvana!
Once our treasure trove of sweat icy goodness was safely tucked away in Larry and Ruth’s freezer, the four of us hopped into their extended cab pickup truck and headed down the road. They wanted to show us some of the beauty of their area and to share with us their very special retreat: Apalachicola.
Apalachicola is located about 80 miles south of their house and is where the Apalachicola River meets the Gulf of Mexico. It is famous for the succulent oysters that are farmed in Apalachicola Bay. We all love oysters so this outing was going to be a real treat.
We arrived just in time for a little walk-about before lunch, allowing us to explore the little town with its restored old buildings and beautiful views of the mouth of the Apalachicola River. We went inside a very nice galley where we learned about shotgun houses, a unique style of house which typically consisted of four rooms that were each connected by doors leading directly into the next room. There are no hallways in these houses. The shotgun houses of Apalachicola were built primarily for mill workers, oystermen and workers in the shrimp canneries and were early examples of affordable housing. They are called shotgun houses because it was said that you could fire a shotgun into the front door and all of the pelts would pass through the other doors and exit out the back of the house without damaging the house.
After our walk-about, we then went to the Owl Café where we had a wonderful seafood lunch consisting of fried oysters, crab dip with flour tortillas, and sautéed flounder over a bed of angel hair pasta with lobster sauce. The meal was made complete with pecan pie topped with vanilla ice cream. Oooooh, it was goooood!
After wiping our mouths, we waddled back to the car where Larry and Run gave us a drive-by tour of the rest of the village and then off we went to the nearby St Joseph’s Bay and onto the very thin finger-like peninsula that separates the bay from the Gulf. Once there, they showed us the beach house they rent each March and then took us to the state park at the end of the peninsula. The views of the bay and the Gulf beach were wonderful and we just had to walk the sugar white sands of the beach. It was great and we talked about how much we enjoyed and missed our years of living on our sailboat and sailing around the world. Ahhh, such great memories!
By now it was late in the afternoon and we had just enough time to swing by Larry and Ruth’s favorite oyster shack before heading back home. We ordered two dozen oysters, prepared two different ways: steamed and baked with a parmesan topping and a dozen shrimp stuffed with crab meat. Paired with a seafood dip and crackers, we were in seventh heaven. None of us could figure out how we could eat again so soon and were amazed at how fast the oysters, stuffed shrimp and seafood dip disappeared! Yum!
When we returned to Larry and Ruth’s historic home, we made a bee-line to the freezer and hauled out the five containers of ice cream that we had stashed away this morning. They had been calling to us during our return trip to their house. What a wonderful way to close a wonderful day!
Tomorrow, Mary Margaret and Ruth will be spending the day cooking for a party that Larry and Ruth are hosting Saturday night. I will spend my time washing and waxing LeuC while Larry is off being a mediator for a case in the State’s civil court system. Larry and Ruth are both retired lawyers and Larry enjoys spending some of his retirement being a court appointed mediator.