23 Essential Cincinnati Creamy Whips You Need to Visit This Summer
If you grew up in Cincinnati — or even in the Midwest — you know that when your favorite neighborhood creamy whip opens its doors summer is here to stay. And while, yes, creamy whip is basically soft-serve ice cream, creamy whip is also the name for where the aforementioned ice cream is served. Real creamy whip must come from a creamy whip (Orange Leaf is not a creamy whip), which generally looks like a shack with a walk-up window and line of little leaguers waiting to order up something sweet after a ballgame. Here is a list of some the top creamy whips in the Greater Cincinnati area.
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Photo: Jesse Fox
4050 Drew Ave., Bridgetown
Zip Dip literally shines like a beacon of light through the dark — the iconic neon lightning bolt adorning the roof is unmistakable. It was added to the building in 1951 and has been guiding customers through summer heat waves to ice cream salvation ever since. Everyone loves a classic. The top-seller here is a basic small cone with a twist, but scrap the whole chocolate and vanilla idea. Zip Dip serves an orange and vanilla twist that will make you forget you ever wanted anything else. If you’re looking for more, Zip Dip has a whole heap of ice cream selections from chipwiches to sundaes. Those who prefer to drink their ice cream should skip the shakes and opt for a malt instead.
508 N. Wyoming Ave., Wyoming
An HVAC salesman and the owner of Wyoming Heating and Air one day realized that Wyoming was in desperate need of some ice cream. They took it upon themselves to create Cowboy Cones, a cow print-covered ice cream stop that serves up sundaes, shakes, floats, tons of imaginative ice cream flavors, and of course, creamy whips. The shop offers up 14 rotating flavors of creamy soft serve that can be topped or swirled to create the perfect flavor. For those who don’t eat dairy, Cowboy Cones serve a few flavors of soy-based ice cream.
Photo: Sami Stewart
2673 Putz Place, East Westwood/Northside
Putz’s Creamy Whip has been in the family since the day Constantine and Anna Putz opened their first trolley car walk-up ice cream window in 1938. The Putz as we know it — now in a square concrete structure just down the hill from Mt. Airy Forest — is a scoop of summer nostalgia served with a smile. Not much about this place has changed over the past several decades. Of the current generation, Putz descendant Mindy Borgman has been cranking out cones at the creamy whip for the last few decades — all on the same Electro-Freeze machine. Another tradition? Putz’s is cash-only. Despite the hoopla about the vintage ice cream machine and vanilla soft serve, the pineapple sherbet is a must. It is creamy like soft serve and tangy like, well, pineapple. “Face cones” are also a hot commodity at Putz’s. The soft-serve cones are adorned with Necco wafer ears and mysteriously crunchy candy googly eyes.
520 W 6th St., Covington
Piper’s Cafe in Covington serves up 70 soft serve flavors, which can be blended with one to three additional flavors, meaning the menu offers 60,000 possible blends. Their flavors range from the traditional to egg nog, pumpkin pie, papaya, licorice, jalapeno and more. For adults, they have a full bar plus booze-infused ice cream treats, offering everything from the Northern Kentucky ice balls to ice cream floats.
611 W Loveland Ave., Loveland
A former Dairy Whip and hamburger stand that opened on the Fourth of July in the 1950s, Loveland Dairy Whip now specializes in creamy soft serve ice cream made with a thick and creamy Dairyman's blend. With chocolate, vanilla and twist cones, plus chocolate, cherry and butterscotch dip top — and a cake batter dip top — or sprinkles, the whip offers a taste of nostalgia. They also have a drive-thru.
Photo: Sami Stewart
7840 Hamilton Ave., Mount Healthy
While they famously serve two-pound monster cones for dirt cheap, their rotating sherbet flavors are to die for. They offer a farmers market variety of flavors throughout the summer: Wild Mountain Blackberry, Bold Black Cherry, Lucky Lime and Perfect Pineapple to name a few. The Bold Black Cherry tastes uncannily like a cherry Starburst.
5178 Mary Ingles Highway, Silver Grove
This little walk-up classic creamy whip in Northern Kentucky has tons of amazing options. If you're a fan of Graeter's black raspberry chocolate chip, opt for one of the Dari Bar's hot fudge sundaes topped with black raspberry. Or a black raspberry blitz — their take on a Blizzard. In addition to soft serve, the Dari Bar offers burgers, sandwiches, coneys, actual footlong footlongs and cheese fries.
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
119 Main St., Milford
Old Milford Parlor sits in Old Milford’s historic district filled with vintage shops and quirky eateries. Grab a classic zebra soft-serve swirl and then select from Old Milford's wild array of toppings, from a classic Krunch Koat and rainbow sprinkles to marshmallow charms and edible gold flakes (made with real gold...).
2529 Montgomery Road, Maineville
Whipty-Do! opened its doors in May of 2009, when owners Joe and Kristen Fields turned their love of ice cream into a colorful brick-and-mortar shop. They began serving blue ice cream in 2010, and customers drive from as far as Columbus and Indianapolis to stock up on the stuff with coolers and dry ice in tow.
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
801 Mt, Hope Ave., E. Price Hill
This walk-up urban creamy whip opened in 2018. Helmed by the Grear and Harkins family, the menu includes floats, shakes, gourmet ice pops, smoothies and flurries in addition to soft serve. Cones come in vanilla, chocolate or swirl with toppings like sea salt, sprinkles and chocolate sauce, but where things really get creative are their flavor swirls. Among additions like lavender, pistachio and chai tea is bourbon barrel stout, a unique Kentucky-style stand-out.