Sunday, July 4, 2010

Rita’s Water Ice, in Tennessee!

One hot night last week, Alex mentioned that he wanted some water ice. In Philadelphia, where he’s from, this stuff is everywhere. Water ice is, as far as I can tell, the same thing as Italian ice, but it’s not a sno-cone or shaved ice. I searched the web to find our nearest ice location and discovered that Rita’s is a national chain with a few stores scattered through several states in addition to the plentiful stores around Philly.

The nearest shop to Cincinnati is in Kettering, but I found that there’s a shop in Collierville, Tennessee, and we were out that way visiting my grandparents. A perfect excuse for an icy treat!

I got a Sweet Tea flavored ice. It was delicious! I typically like the fruity flavors but I couldn’t pass up trying the tea flavored ice. Every flavor I’ve tried at Rita’s has been very close to what it claims to be, and this was right on target. Alex chose a cherry gelati, which is ice sandwiched between frozen custard. He guessed his ice had both real cherries and artificial coloring. He also mentioned that compared to the ice, the custard almost tasted warm! So this is a real hot summertime treat that is colder than ice cream.

As far as I can tell, the ice is HFCS-free and they do offer sugar-free ice flavors, but I prefer real sugar over both HFCS and calorie free sweeteners when I want a treat. If you find yourself near a Rita’s, stop in – I know I will!

I hope everyone is enjoying your weekend at the 4th, if you’re so inclined. The sun is headed down, so I’m out for some fireworks.


  1. happy 4th! And I LOVE that you wrote about this. Before we moved to Canada Johann had no idea what an icee/slushy was and now hes addicted! I think it must be the yummy sugary syrup! Looking at your pictures makes me want one!

  2. Are these the same thing as slushies? Maybe this is the same thing, juts Canadians use a different word. I've never heard of such interesting flavors, sounds cool (and refreshing)!

  3. It's too thick to drink through a straw, which is normally what I'd think of as a slushie, SlushPuppie, or Icee. But it's along that track. Whatever it is, these are all tasty ice treats!

  4. Sounds and looks yummy! I am from Jackson, Tn so it is pretty awesome to find your blog and see that you are from Memphis.