The Scoop: The Bent Spoon

A cup of raspberry and mango sorbets - complete with unbent spoon.
A cup of raspberry and mango sorbets - complete with unbent spoon.
Posted: May 29, 2014


The deal: Co-owners Gabrielle Carbone and Matthew Errico, of Lambertville, N.J., opened this artisan, small-batch ice-cream shop in Princeton, N.J., 10 years ago this month.

Flava fave: The tiny confectionery has developed a devout following with unusual flavors, made fresh daily, and inspired by locally grown, seasonal ingredients. The shop has a repertoire of more than 525 flavors (ask for a free taste), including lavender mascarpone, organic corn with Old Bay seasoning, olive oil, basil, vanilla salt caramel, cream cheese, blue kumquat, lemon mint, chocolate orange, honeydew, cardamom ginger, tomato-peach and Sicilian blood orange. (They recently made oyster ice cream for a Hamilton, N.J., restaurant.)

Details: 35 Palmer Square West, Princeton, N.J. 609-924-BENT,

Hours: Noon-10 p.m. Sundays; noon-6 p.m. Mondays and Tuesdays; 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays; 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. The Bent Spoon also visits area farmers markets and festivals, selling ice cream from the freezer sidecar of a green Vespa.

Inside: This petite, 700-square-foot shop is all Jersey love, with hand-drawn signs tracing the local origins of ingredients and "I (heart) NJ" T-shirts for sale. There's room for just about eight customers to sit comfortably, but the summer sunshine beckons you to savor your sweets in the spacious parklet across the street.

The wait: There's almost always a line out the door when the weather's warm and sunny. But the small army of "spoonies" (ice-cream scoopers) behind the counter ensures that the line goes fast. And these treats are worth the wait.

What we ate: A scoop each of mango and raspberry sorbets, simultaneously tart and sweet - and delicious.

We wanted to eat: The Turkish coffee ice cream will have to wait for another visit, when the caffeine won't keep my eyes open at bedtime.

What we'll have next: An ice-cream sandwich or "banana whip" (one ingredient: whipped, organic banana).

Prices: Ice cream: small (two scoops/flavors) $4.50; medium (three scoops/flavors) $5; large $5.75 (four scoops/four flavors). Hot chocolate, $4.50 for a 10-ounce cup. Ice cream sandwich, $5. Shake, $5.75.

Before you go: Dig up some dough, because this place is cash-only. And be sure to ask for a frequent-customer card (the "Get Bent Club"), because you'll surely return.

Beyond the scoop: Spoonies also make cupcakes and cookies. When the weather cools, try the hot chocolate, a rich, thick blend made with 61 percent cacao Guittard chocolate, from California. It comes in classic, habanero and nondairy (made with organic coconut milk). Be sure to ask for homemade "marshies" and whipped cream on top.

A summertime journey across the Philadelphia region in search of great ice cream and other frozen treats. Reported this week by Daily News staff writer Dana DiFilippo.

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