Remember when fancy soft-serve just meant extra rainbow sprinkles? In an era when even toast has been artisanalized, so too has this classic frozen treat.
At Doi Moi (1800 14th St., NW; 202-733-5131), the kitchen rotates through exotic flavors such as fish-sauce caramel and banana-cocoa. At other restaurants, it’s the toppings that have gotten an upgrade. The strawberry soft-serve at All-Purpose Pizzeria (1250 Ninth St., NW; 202-849-6174) comes with strawberry-Campari jam and crumbled almond cake, while Inferno Pizzeria Napoletana (12207 Darnestown Rd., Darnestown; 301-963-0115) tops its buttermilk-enriched version with a compote of sour cherries—or other seasonal fruit—from Lewis Orchards plus a slab of black-pepper-flecked pie crust. At Daikaya (705 Sixth St., NW; 202-589-1600), plain vanilla is jazzed up by crushed wasabi peas, Calpico yogurt, and chocolate crisps—as close to sprinkles as you’ll get.
This article appears in the August 2017 issue of Washingtonian.