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Mutual Friend – a neighborhood ice cream shop

How homemade ice cream relates to coffee

Raspberry rosé sorbet, roasted banana and peanut butter cups, Madagascar vanilla ice cream at Mutual Friend
Raspberry rosé sorbet, roasted banana and peanut butter cups, Madagascar vanilla ice cream at Mutual Friend

Golden Hill has an ice cream shop, and it’s making me realize the sort of family neighborhood it’s become. Mutual Friend Ice Cream opened next door to Dark Horse Coffee Roasters, and I’d call it a sister shop, but it’s really more of a brother shop; started by a younger brother of the guys behind the coffee.

Place

Mutual Friend Ice Cream

811 25th St #100, San Diego

But that’s not what I mean about it being a family neighborhood. From the moment I walked into the small counter shop, I saw young parents rolling through, babies strapped into carriers, toddlers spooning chocolate smudges onto their faces, and teenagers getting out of the house for an afternoon cone.

Ice cream makes making friends easy.

I’d actually shown up to Dark Horse to grab a cold brew, but through a set of glass double doors that connect the two shops, I spotted a pink, neon sign reading, “Friends and ice cream.” Coffee could wait.

It’s even better than I’d hoped. Mutual Friend joins the recent trend of made-on-premise ice cream shops that have cropped up in San Diego the past couple years, meaning each of the 11 flavors written on a daily chalkboard menu were smoothly soft including several vegan sorbets. I know, because the place is mutually friendly about offering samples: you may try strawberries and cream, mint chocolate chip made with fresh mint, and coconut spiced chai sorbet before you buy.

Still, rather than choose a $4.25 single scoop or a $6.25 double, I went with a $7.50 flight of four small scoops, the first three being Madagascar vanilla bean, Dark Horse coffee (flavored with a hefty dose of coffee beans from next door), and a raspberry rosé sorbet actually made with rosé (most of the alcohol burns off in production).

The fourth flavor is what really got me, though. I would never expect banana anything to be my favorite offering anywhere, but the roasted banana ice cream with chunks of peanut butter cups might be the ice cream flavor combination I’ve been missing all my life. If it’s not available next time I visit, I’ll be disappointed. For $9, you can take home a pint.

Mutual Friend brings an unexpected benefit. Open til nine o’clock and ten on weekends, the place serves coffee after 6 pm, when Dark Horse closes. A couple scoops of ice cream and a hot coffee isn’t how the neighborhood kids are going to do it, but roasted banana and roasted Guatemala sounds like a winning Saturday night to me.

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Raspberry rosé sorbet, roasted banana and peanut butter cups, Madagascar vanilla ice cream at Mutual Friend
Raspberry rosé sorbet, roasted banana and peanut butter cups, Madagascar vanilla ice cream at Mutual Friend

Golden Hill has an ice cream shop, and it’s making me realize the sort of family neighborhood it’s become. Mutual Friend Ice Cream opened next door to Dark Horse Coffee Roasters, and I’d call it a sister shop, but it’s really more of a brother shop; started by a younger brother of the guys behind the coffee.

Place

Mutual Friend Ice Cream

811 25th St #100, San Diego

But that’s not what I mean about it being a family neighborhood. From the moment I walked into the small counter shop, I saw young parents rolling through, babies strapped into carriers, toddlers spooning chocolate smudges onto their faces, and teenagers getting out of the house for an afternoon cone.

Ice cream makes making friends easy.

I’d actually shown up to Dark Horse to grab a cold brew, but through a set of glass double doors that connect the two shops, I spotted a pink, neon sign reading, “Friends and ice cream.” Coffee could wait.

It’s even better than I’d hoped. Mutual Friend joins the recent trend of made-on-premise ice cream shops that have cropped up in San Diego the past couple years, meaning each of the 11 flavors written on a daily chalkboard menu were smoothly soft including several vegan sorbets. I know, because the place is mutually friendly about offering samples: you may try strawberries and cream, mint chocolate chip made with fresh mint, and coconut spiced chai sorbet before you buy.

Still, rather than choose a $4.25 single scoop or a $6.25 double, I went with a $7.50 flight of four small scoops, the first three being Madagascar vanilla bean, Dark Horse coffee (flavored with a hefty dose of coffee beans from next door), and a raspberry rosé sorbet actually made with rosé (most of the alcohol burns off in production).

The fourth flavor is what really got me, though. I would never expect banana anything to be my favorite offering anywhere, but the roasted banana ice cream with chunks of peanut butter cups might be the ice cream flavor combination I’ve been missing all my life. If it’s not available next time I visit, I’ll be disappointed. For $9, you can take home a pint.

Mutual Friend brings an unexpected benefit. Open til nine o’clock and ten on weekends, the place serves coffee after 6 pm, when Dark Horse closes. A couple scoops of ice cream and a hot coffee isn’t how the neighborhood kids are going to do it, but roasted banana and roasted Guatemala sounds like a winning Saturday night to me.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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