Editor's note: This piece originally ran March 29, 2017. With warmer weather upon us, now is the time to try these! Only applicable links have been updated.
What’s better than a delicious, rich milkshake or a frosty ice cream float? How about a milkshake or float spiked with a bit of alcohol?
Wisconsin supper-clubbers have been enjoying boozy ice cream drinks for decades in the form of Grasshoppers and Brandy Alexanders. The Pink Squirrel, a Milwaukee classic invented at Bryant’s Cocktail Lounge in the 1940s, is another great example of a deliciously boozy frozen indulgence that marries the richness of ice cream with the zip of a few spirited additions.
But boozy milkshakes and floats are popping up all over the city these days. And here’s just a few of the spots where you can find them.
1. AJ Bombers
(PHOTO: AJ Bombers)
Grab a burger and order up The Incredible Gulp, which features four scoops of vanilla ice cream enhanced with Tuaca Italian liqueur, Jack Daniels and Sprecher root beer. Sounds OK, no?
2. Black Sheep
(PHOTO: Black Sheep)
Get yourself spiked with the Spiked Shake from Black Sheep, featuring Purple Door salted caramel ice cream with Jameson Irish Whiskey ($10).
3. Merriment Social
There’s no holding back with options like the Sarsaparilla Thrilla, featuring dark rum, butterscotch root beer and cherry bark vanilla bitters in a pint glass rimmed with ginger snap frosting, butterscotch candies and crushed Oreo cookies ($14).
(PHOTO: Monarch Lounge)
You can’t miss with a boozy float from the Monarch Lounge. For something different, try Sprecher ginger soda with juniper berry and lime ice cream and a shot of Rehorst gin ($9).
There are plenty to choose from at the Point Burger Bar, but you can get a double buzz with the Italian Coffee featuring coffee, Godiva chocolate liqueur and espresso liqueur ($10.95).
If you love chocolate, there’s nothing like The Chocolate Truffle, a rich chocolate shake spiked with cocoa liqueur ($9).
Speaking of Pink Squirrels, you can get one (along with other classics) at Supper. But there are also more modern takes on the ice cream drink, like the Far From the Tree, featuring vanilla ice cream enriched with Laird’s Applejack, Daron Calvados and whipped cream, topped with spiced sugar, whipped cream and an apple chip ($12).
Lori is an avid cook whose accrual of condiments and spices is rivaled only by her cookbook collection. Her passion for the culinary industry was birthed while balancing A&W root beer mugs as a teenage carhop, fed by insatiable curiosity and fueled by the people whose stories entwine with each and every dish. She’s had the privilege of chronicling these tales via numerous media, including OnMilwaukee and in her book “Milwaukee Food.” Her work has garnered journalism awards from entities including the Milwaukee Press Club.
When she’s not eating, photographing food, writing or recording the FoodCrush podcast, you’ll find Lori seeking out adventures with her husband Paul, traveling, cooking, reading, learning, snuggling with her cats and looking for ways to make a difference.