Secret Garden

As everyone knows, I love Graeter’s Ice Cream.  It is simply divine.  One of the best things about going to Cincinnati – other than the Reds & Family – is Graeter’s.  As much as I wish we had a Graeter’s in Naples, or somewhat near by, we do not.  However, about a year or so ago we got another straight-from-Ohio Ice Cream Location.  This is Handel’s.  Located in Bonita, tucked right on the side of 41, this is somewhat of a Secret Garden.  It took us over a year to finally try it.  Why?  Well, the fact that any time we drove by, it looked empty, was really a good part of it.  But, as I have seen this on TV, and we had read good reviews, we decided to stop in and visit this Secret Garden.

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We walked into a huge location.  On one side was a self-serve froyo area and the other side, was the ice cream.  All flavors are made in store on a daily basis.  The interior of Handel’s was pleasant as were the staff that waited on us.  After a quick review of the menu, I spotted the word ‘Buckeye’ and was set.  I selected the Buckeye Ice Cream in a Waffle Cone.  I opted for just the normal size but, let me tell you, this was not normal.  The ice cream was 3 scoops out of the waffle cone.  Woah Woah Woah – this was big.

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I was really bummed that this ice cream was in a vanilla base.  I much prefer ice cream in a chocolate base.  I found that the base ice cream itself was extremely thick and creamy.  The flavors were natural and spoke on their own.  In addition to the vanilla flavors, there was a good amount of peanut butter flavor and swirls.  While the swirls were not nearly as much as the peanut butter in Buckeye Blitz, they were quite pleasant and appreciated.  Plus, this ice cream was loaded with buckeyes.  Boy, do I love buckeyes.  These were great – a smooth chocolate exterior with a creamy peanut butter interior.  They were hard from being frozen but not too much to make them inedible.  And, the waffle cone was great…by far one of the best waffle cones I have ever had.  When you think and smell waffle cone, Handel’s kills it.

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I did enjoy this ice cream and the waffle cone quite a bit.  While I would have preferred a chocolate base ice cream, this stuff was still good.  Mommy and Taylor also liked their ice cream and, as I mentioned, the service was great.  In the short time that we were there, the place had a steady flow of people…and this was on a Sunday afternoon.  It may have taken us quite some time to visit but, I can guarantee it will not be this long until we visit again.  No, Handel’s is no Graeter’s and their Buckeye ice cream is not comparable to Buckeye Blitz.  However, Handel’s features some fabulous creamy ice cream, great flavors and killer waffle cones.  Do yourself a flavor and visit this Secret Garden.

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