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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.

Somi Somi

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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.

Frozen Fruit Co

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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.

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.

Bumsan Organic Milk Bar

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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.

Top Round Roast Beef

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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.

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

Magpies Softserve

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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

Jon & Vinny's

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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.

Manhattan Beach Post

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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

Honeymee Los Angeles

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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.

Hamada-Ya

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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

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.

Bob's Freeze

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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.

Poly Burgers

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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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Somi Somi

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.

Frozen Fruit Co

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.

Nomad Truck

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.

Bumsan Organic Milk Bar

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.

Top Round Roast Beef

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.

CVT Soft Serve Truck

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.

CVT Softserve

Magpies Softserve

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.

Magpies Farley Elliott

Jon & Vinny's

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.

Manhattan Beach Post

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.

MB Post

Honeymee Los Angeles

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.

Hamada-Ya

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.

Hamada Ya

LocoL

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.

Bob's Freeze

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.

Poly Burgers

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.

Poly Burgers

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