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LA's Best Soft Serve for a Scorching Summer Day, 2017 Edition

Here's where to find the season's most important sweet treat

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There is simply nothing quite like a perfectly realized cone of soft serve ice cream. While artisan ice cream shops abound in sunny Los Angeles, with their unique flavors and impressive toppings, a lush, melty cone full of creamy soft serve is satisfying in a way that a lick of some hard scoop could never match. From old-school classics to new-wave Instagram fodder, here are the best soft serve options to cool down in Los Angeles.

Added: Somi Somi, Frozen Fruit Co, Nomad Truck, Bumsan, Top Round

Removed: Sambar, CottonHi, Clifton's Cafeteria

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Somi Somi

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621 S Manhattan Pl #208-A
Los Angeles, CA 90005
(213) 568-3284
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Begging to be Instagrammed is the soft serve-filled Korean take on taiyaki, ah-boong. First select between soft serve flavors milk, ube, black sesame, and matcha; then choose a filling of red bean, custard, or Nutella; add a few toppings; and snap away.

2. Frozen Fruit Co

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729 Montana Ave #2
Santa Monica, CA 90403
(424) 744-8860
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This London-born concept has found a happy home in health-conscious Santa Monica. That’s because Frozen Fruit Co. makes its frozen treats only with real fruit and natural fruit sugars for a more guilt-free iteration of soft serve.

3. Nomad Truck

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It’d be wise to stake out The NoMad Truck to cool down with an homage to the New York restaurant’s ultra-popular milk and honey plated dessert. The truck version is built with milk and honey soft serve and topped with honey-oat shortbread brittle for a tasty crunch. Follow the truck on Instagram and Twitter to catch it at locations including LACMA and Smorgasburg.

4. Bumsan Organic Milk Bar

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534 S Western Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90020
(213) 908-5192
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Koreatown is positioning itself as a leader of soft serve, with plenty of Instagrammable shops throughout the neighborhood offering up perfect afternoon pick-me-ups. The newest of the bunch is Bumsan Organic Milk Bar, the first Stateside branch of the chain with locations in Korea and China. Expect swirls that come by way of an organic Korean dairy farm decorated with pretty-as-a-picture sprinkle rims.

5. Top Round Roast Beef

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1000 South La Brea Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90019
(323) 549-9445
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While it’s technically a custard, no one is splitting the difference when the extra rich frozen treat swirled into a cone arrives after tearing into a signature roast beef sandwich.

6. CVT Soft Serve Truck

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One of LA’s best pure options for soft serve is the CVT truck, a retrofitted Mr. Softee rig that works the streets as well as private parties all over town. As the name implies, they offer only chocolate, vanilla, or twist, with sprinkles or sea salt.

CVT Softserve

7. Magpies Softserve

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2660 Griffith Park Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90039
(323) 486-7094
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Silver Lake newcomer Magpies is already making waves for their artisanal approach to strip mall soft serve, making all ingredients from scratch while turning out some of LA’s best ice cream flavors.

Magpies Farley Elliott

8. Jon & Vinny's

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412 N Fairfax Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 334-3369
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Don’t let the premier price tag ($6) sway one from getting the ice cream at Jon & Vinny’s, it’s a deliciously cool finish to a hearty meal at one of LA’s top Italian-American restaurants.

9. Manhattan Beach Post

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1142 Manhattan Ave
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
(310) 545-5405
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South Bay stalwart MB Post does a rotating soft serve for dessert: the most recent iteration offers a rocky road base with burnt marshmallows and mulled cherries.

MB Post

10. Honeymee Los Angeles

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3377 Wilshire Blvd Suite 116
Los Angeles, CA 90010
(213) 267-0020
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Honeymee has expanded like mad over the past couple of years into city-centric locations like Koreatown, Sawtelle, and beyond, thanks to the strength of their simple soft serve that’s backed up by lots of drizzled honey — and real honeycomb — on top. They’re also serving outlying communities like Rowland Heights, Cerritos, and even Irvine.

11. Hamada-Ya

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3760 S Centinela Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90066
(310) 390-7307

Tucked inside Mitsuwa Market on the Westside, this simple cafe space does a mean soft serve too — and it may well be the hidden jewel of the entire store.

Hamada Ya

12. LocoL

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1950 E 103rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90002

Roy Choi and Daniel Patterson’s LocoL does soft serve too, keeping costs low while trying to help kids and anyone from the neighborhood beat the long summer heat in Watts.

13. Bob's Freeze

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5144 E Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90022
(323) 263-6659

A decades-old standard, Bob’s Freeze is a throwback to a time when soft serve was the norm, and a banana split didn’t cost $5. Make sure to go for the chocolate dip.

14. Poly Burgers

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1460 Atlantic Ave
Long Beach, CA 90813
(562) 599-2826
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Poly Burger gets its name from the adjacent Poly High School, which overruns the place daily for burgers and ice cream. Come summertime, the soft serve is a huge hit, served in classic cones to waiting kids all day long.

Poly Burgers

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1. Somi Somi

621 S Manhattan Pl #208-A, Los Angeles, CA 90005

Begging to be Instagrammed is the soft serve-filled Korean take on taiyaki, ah-boong. First select between soft serve flavors milk, ube, black sesame, and matcha; then choose a filling of red bean, custard, or Nutella; add a few toppings; and snap away.

621 S Manhattan Pl #208-A
Los Angeles, CA 90005

2. Frozen Fruit Co

729 Montana Ave #2, Santa Monica, CA 90403

This London-born concept has found a happy home in health-conscious Santa Monica. That’s because Frozen Fruit Co. makes its frozen treats only with real fruit and natural fruit sugars for a more guilt-free iteration of soft serve.

729 Montana Ave #2
Santa Monica, CA 90403

3. Nomad Truck

Los Angeles, CA

It’d be wise to stake out The NoMad Truck to cool down with an homage to the New York restaurant’s ultra-popular milk and honey plated dessert. The truck version is built with milk and honey soft serve and topped with honey-oat shortbread brittle for a tasty crunch. Follow the truck on Instagram and Twitter to catch it at locations including LACMA and Smorgasburg.

4. Bumsan Organic Milk Bar

534 S Western Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90020

Koreatown is positioning itself as a leader of soft serve, with plenty of Instagrammable shops throughout the neighborhood offering up perfect afternoon pick-me-ups. The newest of the bunch is Bumsan Organic Milk Bar, the first Stateside branch of the chain with locations in Korea and China. Expect swirls that come by way of an organic Korean dairy farm decorated with pretty-as-a-picture sprinkle rims.

534 S Western Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90020

5. Top Round Roast Beef

1000 South La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90019

While it’s technically a custard, no one is splitting the difference when the extra rich frozen treat swirled into a cone arrives after tearing into a signature roast beef sandwich.

1000 South La Brea Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90019

6. CVT Soft Serve Truck

Los Angeles, CA
CVT Softserve

One of LA’s best pure options for soft serve is the CVT truck, a retrofitted Mr. Softee rig that works the streets as well as private parties all over town. As the name implies, they offer only chocolate, vanilla, or twist, with sprinkles or sea salt.

7. Magpies Softserve

2660 Griffith Park Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90039
Magpies Farley Elliott

Silver Lake newcomer Magpies is already making waves for their artisanal approach to strip mall soft serve, making all ingredients from scratch while turning out some of LA’s best ice cream flavors.

2660 Griffith Park Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90039

8. Jon & Vinny's

412 N Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036

Don’t let the premier price tag ($6) sway one from getting the ice cream at Jon & Vinny’s, it’s a deliciously cool finish to a hearty meal at one of LA’s top Italian-American restaurants.

412 N Fairfax Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90036

9. Manhattan Beach Post

1142 Manhattan Ave, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
MB Post

South Bay stalwart MB Post does a rotating soft serve for dessert: the most recent iteration offers a rocky road base with burnt marshmallows and mulled cherries.

1142 Manhattan Ave
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

10. Honeymee Los Angeles

3377 Wilshire Blvd Suite 116, Los Angeles, CA 90010

Honeymee has expanded like mad over the past couple of years into city-centric locations like Koreatown, Sawtelle, and beyond, thanks to the strength of their simple soft serve that’s backed up by lots of drizzled honey — and real honeycomb — on top. They’re also serving outlying communities like Rowland Heights, Cerritos, and even Irvine.

3377 Wilshire Blvd Suite 116
Los Angeles, CA 90010

11. Hamada-Ya

3760 S Centinela Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90066
Hamada Ya

Tucked inside Mitsuwa Market on the Westside, this simple cafe space does a mean soft serve too — and it may well be the hidden jewel of the entire store.

3760 S Centinela Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90066

12. LocoL

1950 E 103rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90002

Roy Choi and Daniel Patterson’s LocoL does soft serve too, keeping costs low while trying to help kids and anyone from the neighborhood beat the long summer heat in Watts.

1950 E 103rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90002

13. Bob's Freeze

5144 E Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90022

A decades-old standard, Bob’s Freeze is a throwback to a time when soft serve was the norm, and a banana split didn’t cost $5. Make sure to go for the chocolate dip.

5144 E Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90022

14. Poly Burgers

1460 Atlantic Ave, Long Beach, CA 90813
Poly Burgers

Poly Burger gets its name from the adjacent Poly High School, which overruns the place daily for burgers and ice cream. Come summertime, the soft serve is a huge hit, served in classic cones to waiting kids all day long.

1460 Atlantic Ave
Long Beach, CA 90813

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