Choosing foods that are kind to your body can be particularly hard when you’re eating out with friends. Luckily, some of the local dessert vendors have made an effort to make these uncomfortable situations a lot easier! [expand]
One hot spot to pick up some cold treats is Main Street Sweets/Ben & Jerry’s in Westhampton Beach. After growing up with a Bubby and two Great Aunts who didn’t think that the day was done until everyone had eaten some ice cream, I can appreciate the value of Ben & Jerry’s. Though I am admittedly not the biggest fan of traditional ice cream, I’m more likely to take a taste if it’s just a little bit healthier than the full-fat stuff.
Main Street Sweets offers a few Ben & Jerry’s options that I would consider, including low-fat frozen yogurt and no-fat sorbet. But what really catches my eye is their Chocolate Fudge Brownie low-fat yogurt. Along with their low-fat Half Baked yogurt flavor, this extremely popular choice basically funds the whole Westhampton Beach operation. Plus the store offers nutritional information both in the store and online, which is great for those of us watching what we eat. Score, Main Street Sweets!
It’s a hard thing to create a product that imitates something that has been popular for decades and improve it. But that is just what The Soft Serve Fruit Co. in Water Mill did: they have introduced an incredible new variety of frozen treat to the market. The smooth consistency of the fruit flavors the company offers will have you doubting that it’s dairy-free, but don’t worry – there is only fresh fruit, filtered water and “a touch” of organic cane sugar in this gluten-free, fat-free treat, and it’s only about 80 calories for 3.5 oz! It’s different than anything I have ever tasted, a little bit creamier than sorbet, smoother than frozen yogurt and with the perfect amount of sweet. The flavors change based upon the season, so you should call ahead to see if your favorite choice is available (but they’re all delicious). The usual flavors vary between Banana, Strawberry, Apple, Mango, Cranberry and Pear, but sometimes they have specialty options available (like Blueberry).
In addition to a few of the traditional ice cream toppings—think hot fudge and chocolate chips—The Soft Serve Fruit Co. also offers fresh fruit like blackberries, raspberries and kiwi, plus unique toppings, including white chocolate, organic granola, almonds, coconut, honey and a whole lot more! Their different varieties of pre-set sundaes are truly a work of art. I am far from a banana fan, but when Water Mill store manager Alexandra Lair handed me a Crunchy Salty sundae, I couldn’t stop myself from devouring it immediately (alone, in my car, ashamed at how fast I managed to gulp it down). In this one, their Banana soft serve is topped with fresh banana slices, broken pretzel pieces, chocolate chips and peanut butter sauce. They also offer smoothies (with protein powder, a vitamin boost or flax and fiber mixed in if you want) and pretzel cones!
Whether you choose one of their sundaes or design your own, you won’t be disappointed by the best food craze to hit the Hamptons in my lifetime. It might seem strange to head to Water Mill for dessert, but it’s worth it. Pull off of Montauk Highway to the Hampton Coffee Company location (The Soft Serve Fruit Co. has opened their store in the same building). The coffee shop closes earlier than the frozen soft serve does, so don’t be fooled if it looks closed, just head to the separate entrance to the left. The next time you are out with your friends and family looking for a sweet treat (either here or in Manhattan), remember to give this delicious place a try!
Main Street Sweets/Ben & Jerry’s, 121 Main St., Westhampton Beach. 631-288-5753, www.benjerry.com.
The Soft Serve Fruit Co., 869 Montauk Highway (same building as Hampton Coffee Company), Water Mill. 631-726-6166, www.softservefruitco.com.