We constantly troll Yelp, Facebook, and yes, even al.com to find new foodie adventures. A few weeks ago, we read this article on al.com about a new ice cream truck concept called Bendy’s. Our first reaction was, with Big Spoon (which yes, we love and will write about at some point, I promise), Pixie, and Ono … we weren’t sure if there were enough calories left in our MyFitnessPal apps, or enough unique takes on ice cream, to make room for this newcomer. But after our foodie friend Michelle of Hero Doughtnuts post fame told me she had actually eaten at the suddenly famous Bendy’s truck and after having an ice cream cookie sandwich, had actually purchased a half dozen cookies to go, we knew they must be on to something. Michelle doesn’t spend her carbohydrate calories just anywhere.
So at the end of last week, we began stalking the Bendy’s truck. The next opportunity to eat there, we determined, would be Friday night at Ross Bridge. Never having been there before, we used Google Maps to determine that Ross Bridge was a good 25-30 minutes from Downtown Bham. But committed to the Bendy’s cause, we set out at rush hour on a Friday evening.
First, I have to give a shout out to Ross Bridge. As die-hard urbanites, even we have to admit that the place is pretty sweet. When we arrived, they were taking down the giant inflatable trampoline next to the community pool, all of which was next to where the movie-on-the-lawn was being set up.
Impressively, there were actually three food trucks lined up on the main drag: 2 for dinner, and 1 for dessert. That’s more than I’ve ever seen together anywhere inside city limits, other than during a food truck event. We had no interest in the food – we went straight for desert.
Here’s the truck.
So, a build-your-own ice cream sandwich concept. Our first question (which would have been answered if we had just read all the way to the bottom of the menu) was whether we could get different cookies on the top and bottom. The friendly face at the window responded, “This is like Burger King. You can have it your way.” This place was clearly nothing like Burger King, obviously, but we appreciated the loose analogy. Most important distinction from Burger King: all cookie and ice cream flavors are 100% homemade.
After extensive discussion, Mr. Foodie and I decided on flavors. I love anything double chocolate, so that was an obvious cookie choice. Mr. Foodie’s #1 favorite cookie is always snickerdoodle, but I begged for pretzel toffee and offered that we should select peanut butter, Mr. Foodie’s favorite, as the ice cream. Decision: made. And of course, we had to get it rolled in chocolate chips. Why? Because we can.
Here’s the aerial view, double-chocolate on top.
As you can imagine, we ate this one with a spoon and our hands. I was mostly covered in chocolate and stickiness by the end, which was totally worth it. The cookies were thicker than any other ice cream sandwich cookie I’ve ever had, but also soft and chewy, clearly fresh. The double chocolate was just as chocolate-y as we had hoped, and the pretzel toffee was a great combo of sweet and salty. The peanut butter ice cream was rich and smooth, and went perfectly with the cookies.
By the time we were halfway done with this sandwich, we decided we had to have a second. We ran back to the truck. One cookie was snickerdoodle, because that’s only fair. Michelle had highly recommended the chocolate chip, so we figured that would be a classic on the other side. Since strawberry was listed as a signature flavor, and strawberries are right in season, we had to choose the strawberry buttermilk. And of course, we had to get it rolled in sprinkles. Why? Because we can.
The beautiful side view:
Again, the cookies were perfect. Snickerdoodle was sugary and sweet, ad the chocolate chip was a perfect chocolate chip cookie. The buttermilk made the ice cream tart, which was the perfect pairing with the sweet strawberries.
For this sandwich, instead of trying to eat it with a spoon, we wanted to investigate whether it would be possible to eat it as a sandwich. Mr. Foodie demonstrates:
The cookies are so thick, and the ice cream is so lovely, that sometimes it gets a little messy. Here’s a strawberry making a quiet escape:
In sum, we get it. Bendy’s definitely brings something unique to Bham’s burgeoning dessert truck scene: #1: very distinctive ice cream sandwiches, using thick homemade cookies that taste like they’re right off the baking sheet with fantastic homemade ice cream. #2: customization (who doesn’t like to be in control of their ice cream?). #3: you can get mixed dozens of cookies to go (we got a half dozen chocolate chip for Michelle).
I think the best way to figure out where they’re going to be next is to follow them on Facebook or Instagram. We’ll probably see you there.