For anyone who loves ice cream samples and tours, High Road Craft Ice Cream & Sorbet any Saturday from 10am to 4pm is a treat! The Atlanta-based company produces artisan ice creams, gelato, and sorbets, collaborating with sustainable, responsible partners from chefs at 115 area restaurants to Jittery Joe’s, the Athens-based coffee micro-roasters.
High Road hit the market at full trot and has been running ever since. Their recipes are often developed as pairings to chef’s recipes, or as a “I-wonder-what” wild combination of flavors one of them dreams up. The pace is brutal. 60 hour weeks are not uncommon. But, it IS ice cream! And who could complain making ICE CREAM????
The grouchy lady (my phone’s Navigation voice) will get you to the set of buildings, but High Road is on the row behind the buildings at the road. It’s fairly easy to find once you know that.
Jennifer greeted us as we walked in last Saturday. Lorenz was finishing up a tour, so I tasted some Amaretto Cherry Chocolate Chunk while we waited. Bill Ronay hadn’t tasted the Brown Butter Praline Ice Cream that won the 2012 Flavor of Georgia Food Products Contest, so he had a taste of the varietal of that they were offering.
A group walked in about two minutes before Lorenz came in, so Jennifer hit the freezer for more flavors. Limoncello Sorbet was tart and sweet, a lot like the Limoncello I’ve been making at home with a King & Prince Beach & Golf Resort recipe.
We all hairnetted-up and stepped back into the production area. There are a lot of rules a food producer must follow. Age-ing tanks and vat pasteurizers have to be separate from the other machines & processes.
High Road makes all its caramels, roasts all its nuts, hand squeezes all its lemons & limes, and grinds all its peanut butter. All of the add-ins are carefully created.
They produce product by the pint, by the gelato pan, and in three gallon buckets for their stores and clients. And, since it is illegal to sell hand-packed pints commercially, they have a packing line that pours 10 pints per minute.
All the ice cream, sorbet and gelato – when it is packaged – goes into a freezer that cools it harder than a rock (-30 degrees) in 30 minutes to an hour. As Lorenz says, “We make ice cream, not soup!”
The final step in the process is delivery. Decked out in a top hat and cool clothes, the delivery man makes a hit with hotel chefs and grocery store inventory personnel.
The people who work at High Road Craft Ice Cream and Sorbet are passionate about what they do and love telling their story.
You can buy pints after the tour at the packing house, online, and at high-end retailers and restaurants throughout the Southeast and Southwest.
Tour any Saturday between 10am & 4pm!
High Road Craft Ice Cream & Sorbet
2241 Perimeter Park Dr, Suite 7
Atlanta Georgia 30341