Lula's Sweet Apothecary: NYC: East Village

I visited Lula's last summer and have been meaning to go back ever since.  At this point, I think it's finally time to just write the review and hope the future will bring me a good opportunity.

What I remember about this small but uncramped East Village ice cream shop is that there was old fashioned music playing* and that everyone there was surprisingly friendly (this was back in my early days of New Yorkerness when I had learned to fear snootiness of one sort or another at every turn, so kindness was always taken great note of), quick with the smiles and sample offerings.  It is cash only though, so be prepared!

It's all vegan here, with gluten free-options abounding too (not to mention organic stuff and whatever "all natural" means).  The confection that delighted my mouth that day:

Soy Cake Batter Twisted with Cashew Chocolate
It was good stuff.  I love me some cashew ice cream.  And I love living in a world where I can get non-cow cake batter ice cream.

You can follow them on Twitter if you wanna know what they'll have before going.

Speaking of ice cream, I realized I’m not really an environmentalist the other day when I turned the heater on in order to eat some ice cream in February.

How do vegans feel about the breast milk thing?  I guess it depends on why you're a vegan.  At least the humanitarians can have some ice cream now.  Chuckle.

Lula's is selling the vegan doughnuts from some new boys in town, Dun-Well Doughnuts, who are smart enough to make their doughnuts with fun flavors (Root Beer, Blue Rose with Coconut, Green Tea and Ginger, etc.).  Oh how I hope to go try them soon!  If anyone tries them, let me know how they are!
Update from 6.24.2011

For the past week or so, this post has been getting hundreds of views that seem to be coming from random Ukranian blogs.  Confused by this and hoping for come Dun-Well Doughnuts, I decided to put Lula's on my foodie adventure list for my latest trip back to NY, to see if I could find a clue as to what the hell was going on.

When I got there, still dragging my suitcase full of appliances behind me, the line was out the door.  It's clearly best to go in the middle of the afternoon and/or on a weekday as I did on my first trip there, when there was no line at all.  Each customer ahead of me seemed to take at least 5 minutes per interaction, which seemed exorbitant, but whatever, we were lined up for our fix of vegan ice cream crack.  Speaking of which, the retro ads on the wall (in conjunction with the 50s music) is adorable:

Oh for the days when one could actually buy the Coke drink that really did relieve fatigue... another retro note: the place is cash only.
Looking around the place and the menu, it occurred to me that, if you didn't know anything about this place walking in, it'd be really hard to tell that it was a vegan ice cream shop.  Maybe that's intentional, luring people in to try the delicious stuff, only for them to find out after the fact that it wasn't cow milk. There are clues though.  On the menu is a NY Egg Cream, "No eggs, no cream."  Except egg creams never have eggs anyway and usually have milk rather than cream.  Other than that, maybe if you noticed that all the little packaged treats for sale on the shelf in there are vegan that'd clue you in.

For the one sample I allowed myself, I tried the licorice ice cream just 'cause I knew I'd never want to actually order it.  It tastes like licorice (in case you were wondering).

I found out the Dun Well Donuts are only on Saturdays and are usually sold out by 8 PM.

This time I got the hard packed ice cream, opting for a scoop of peanut butter chocolate chip and one of cookies and cream in a sundae with hot fudge, candied pecans, coconut whipped cream and a cherry on top.  A sane person would've gotten this to stay as all three of the bar stools along the wall were actually available and in order to get a picture in a nice glass.  But there's something wrong with me, so I ordered it to go and continued on my way with my fucking suitcase, stopping every 30 feet or so to take another bite of this magnificence:

omgomgomg sooo good, f'real

Lula's Sweet Apothecary on Urbanspoon

*That's what my note called the music.  I'm guessing some doo-wop from the '50s.  Update: yup.

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