Thursday, April 28, 2011

Straight A's for Bassett's Ice Cream

The boys at CHA get down to business -- Grading Bassett's latest flavor ice-cream, Devil's Delight

Michael Strange (CHA, 1976), started cleaning tables at Reading Terminal Market for the family ice-cream business while in 6th Grade at Chestnut Hill Academy.  "I wasn't allowed to scoop the ice-cream at that age...only bus tables," Strange remembers. 

Today, as President of Bassett's Ice Cream, Michael is still a committed ice-cream lover: "My favorite is Butterscotch Vanilla. I've tried all flavors, but I keep returning to Bassett's Butterscotch Vanilla. I love ice-cream.  I never get tired of it," and adds, "the only reason I don't keep any in my fridge at home is because I know once I start on a pint of ice-cream, then I can't stop!" 

This love of ice-cream prompted Michael to throw himself heartily into the chance of collaborating with CHA to develop a new flavor ice-cream -- to mark both the school's 150th Anniversary and coincidentally Bassett's own 150th Anniversary later this year.

The flavor was developed in close collaboration with the CHA school children.  The children were organized into groups, representing all ages from Lower School to Upper School and asked to invent an appropriate name and suggest a fun flavor.  The school had no shortage of suggestions, but voted on "Devil's Delight" (named after the school's mascot, the ubiquitous Blue Devil.) 

Some bright spark devised the idea of mixing in dark blue and light blue M+Ms - to represent both the school colors at Sports Day and then they were away. 

Well... except that the children had a collective brain freeze and deemed it necessary to throw in some extra caramel and chocolate swirls for good measure.

The new flavor was market-tested this Spring - or rather, wolfed down by the school children - who graded and made further suggestions during a taste test.

On Friday April 29th, at Blue and Blue Day at CHA, the school will reveal the new 150th Anniversary flavor, Devil's Delight - for all to try. 

Can't make it tomorrow? 

The new flavor will be available at Reading Terminal Market on Saturday 16th July, during the hugely popular Ice-Cream Festival.  More details to follow on the Festival shortly.

There's always a line at the Market for Bassett's Ice-Cream. 

Top flavors are still the classics...Vanilla and French Vanilla, but Bassett's launches 2-3 new flavors a year and is expanding rapidly into the Chinese market.   With help from merchant friends at the Market, Bassett's has developed a new best-seller - Green Tea Ice-Cream.

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