The best Ice Cream in Montreal: our favourite ice cream spots

Published on March 16, 2018
The best Ice cream

We all cherish the warm summer weather, and knowing where to find the best ice cream is really important! The origins of ice cream go way back to the Roman Empire and Emperor Nero (we’re talking first century anno domini years!), who apparently liked what we would call a sorbet, made of fruit, honey and snow, brought to Rome for him from the Alps (of course!) Over the centuries, ice cream has evolved thanks to different recipes from all around the world ranging from China to the Middle East, and from Italy to North America. Nowadays, whether it be ice cream, sorbet or gelati, the choice of flavours is endless and we are lucky that Montreal has it all, especially the artisanal kind of frozen treats.

Our « best of » list has been compiled with the invaluable expertise of Cacao Barry – an internationally renowned French chocolate company that has been in the business for more than 170 years. It has been a great honour and pleasure to work with Cacao Barry to prepare this list of Montreal’s finest ice cream products. Cacao Barry has the reputation of being a high-end producer of some of the world’s finest and most refined chocolate! Working with cocoa growers and chefs around the world, Cacao Barry offers a wide range of cocoa products, chocolate coatings, dried fruit products, chocolates from exclusive plantations and delicious chocolate recipes.

Ice cream shops or creameries (or ice cream parlours as they have sometimes been known), were often connected to dairies but that has all changed and today’s small artisan ice cream shops are gaining in popularity, as our list indicates. The most popular ice cream flavour still remains vanilla with connaisseurs preferring pure French vanilla or vanilla bean. Chocolate is the next favourite.

If you’re looking for more suggestions, check out our list of the best croissants in Montreal, or the best Italian restaurants in Montreal!

Eating quantities of ice cream can come at a ‘hefty’ price so we tried to walk or bike to most of these places, anything to counter the accumulative effect of too much of a good thing! Here’s our list of the best ice creams, gelati and sorbets in the city :


Iconoglace offers six flavours of soft ice cream, four of which are certified vegan. These flavours change from week to week, depending on product availability. Everything at Iconoglace is homemade, even the waffle cones. The slushes are made with real fruit and organic maple water, so there are no artificial ingredients! The dairy bar is open all summer long every day from 1 to 10 pm.

CrĂšmerie Dalla Rose

Dalla Rose’s small creamery recently opened in St-Henri and wow, what delicious ice cream is on offer!  The mouth starts to water with the 6 different flavours to choose from plus there are 4 different ice-cream sandwiches with rotating flavours and these are the crùmerie’s specialty.  Choose what kind of biscuit and ice cream flavour works for you and it is made right there on-the-spot.  The exceptional deliciousness is down to the high-quality of the ingredients and perfect for a hot summer day. Alison Slattery — Instagram
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CrĂšmerie Meu Meu

Meu Meu’s ice cream is always extraordinary.  The friendly welcome into this tiny space is extended to each customer and the staff are very attentive, adding to the experience. Meu Meu is popular and the photos on the walls are testimony to its appreciative customers. The choice of ice cream flavours is very creative and original and we also found the homemade iced yogurts very flavourful.  Meu Meu serves ice cream of such a good quality, it is easy to recommend. lea_raciop
Ripples Mile-End

Ripples – St-Laurent

Bring on the summer because that’s when Ripples opens its door and the customers come streaming in. This blvd Saint-Laurent spot has been serving sublime ice cream for more than two decades, with about 30 flavours!  Choosing a favourite isn’t easy but we have a weakness for the 6X Chocolat and French Vanilla.  But don’t stop there because sorbets, frozen yogurts and Blizzards of all kinds are also available.  Don’t forget 
. Ripples on blvd Saint-Laurent. Alison Slattery — Instagram
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Pizzeria Gema

Gema Pizzeria may be one of Montreal’s finest pizzeria’s, but Gema also has a counter selling extraordinary soft ice cream. Thanks to chef Michele Forgione’s recipe, Gema is now a Tastet favourite for ice cream. Whether it’s vanilla or chocolate ice cream, dipped in chocolate or caramel, the outcome is ice cream heaven! Julie Perreault
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Les GivrĂ©s – Castelnau

The owners Martin and Alexandre offer one of the best artisanal ice creams in town! Their ice cream is fantastic and definitely ranks with the best in town.  It’s available in some grocery stores, however, it’s way more fun to enjoy it at either of the Les GivrĂ©s locations, either on de Castelnau East street or Masson street. We also recommend buying any of their frozen ice cream selections (eg. bĂ»ches, iglu) for take out. They are delightfully creative, and each delicious spoonful is guaranteed to slip smoothly down – a perfect dessert for any celebration. Les GivrĂ©s
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L’Armoire Ă  Glaces

L’Armoire Ă  Glaces is a charming little artisan ice cream shop on Plaza St. Hubert. All their products are prepared in-house, resulting in quality ice creams and ice-cream cakes.  Each flavour of their sorbets and ice cream is quite exceptional.  But if we must, our personal favourite goes to the chocolate, made with 70% pure chocolate.  At L’Armoire Ă  Glaces,  the owners welcome every customer with a smile and the service is exceedingly friendly. L’Armoire Ă  glaces

Le Bilboquet

Bilboquet’s beginnings go back to 1983 and it has since become a Montreal landmark where you simply have to go and savour great ice cream.  When there are more than 40 flavours to choose from, then it is worth the effort. The creamery now has several locations which have thankfully shortened the line-ups, so you reach the doors of this ice cream temple sooner rather than later. Le Bilboquet

Kem CoBa

Kem CoBa, which translates from Vietnamese to “third auntie’s ice cream”, is the nickname given to Ngoc, the co-owner, by his niece. They serve their own wonderful homemade ice creams and fresh sorbets.  The flavours are very original, made with excellent ingredients and the few ice cream cakes have some Asian influences.  If you decide to go during peak hours then be prepared for very long lines so maybe plan ahead. Graebeard88
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CrĂšmerie Bo-Bec

CrĂšmerie Bo-Bec is an artisan ice cream shop located in the heart of Plateau Mont-Royal. It opened in 1989 near Parc Laurier and may look a little dated, but we’re there for the ice cream.  With more than 20 homemade ice creams and traditional soft ice cream, there’s a flavour for everyone.  Go to the self-serve counter for take-out. © Photo Frenchcuisse

Chez Tousignant

Surrounded by a decor typical of a 1950s snackbar, Chez Tousignant’s menu has tried and true classic snacks but they also serve the same excellent soft ice cream from Pizzeria Gema, making it de facto delicious. Why? Because the owners of the two places are one and the same.  The difference, however, is that at Chez Tousignant, you can also choose between a chocolate or vanilla milkshake, and between soft ice cream made of chocolate, vanilla or both. It’s all good! Julie Perreault
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The best Ice Cream in Montreal: our favourite ice cream spots

Pandan definitely serves the most original ice creams on this list! Their flavours have their origins in Malaysia and Thailand.  Close to the Lionel Groulx metro station, this latest ice cream shop makes their ice cream using a special technique: hand-rolled ice cream mixtures that can be personalized to your own tastes (check out their video). No additives or preservatives with a surprisingly tasty result. Munch Mtl

Café San Gennaro

San Gennaro is one of the best Italian cafĂ©s in Montreal.  They serve many excellent dishes, including pizza al taglio, and their Italian coffee is really good. It’s a small space painted in soft tones and the service is friendly. The gelati choices are wonderful, fulfilling what your tastebuds may be desiring.  Allow yourself to feel swept away by San Gennaro’s charm and atmosphere. San Gennaro
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The best Ice Cream in Montreal: our favourite ice cream spots

Spoom is the ice cream counter at Restaurant Mile-Ex, a location we often refer to as a good place to dine.  Place your order at the window or from inside Mile-Ex.  Spoom comes from the Italian « spuma »,  a type of frozen dessert like a frothy sorbet, made from whipped egg white, fruit juice/wine & syrup « with the consistency of a creamy foam », explains Gregory Paul, one of the creators behind this venture. The flavours change according to the season and whims of Spoom but count on at least 6 choices. If you drop in while on a walk with your four-legged friend, there’s even a veal option! © Photo Audree_ellem

Ca Lem

Ca Lem is an ice cream shop near Concordia University’s Loyola Campus, in Montreal West, a great location for their great ice cream. The atmosphere is welcoming, and they also have a small terrace. The 20 or so flavours mean everyone should find an ice cream of their choice and there is even a « flavour of the week ».  The students are definitely happy, a pretty clear indication of a successful ice cream shop! Gilliantruong

FCO di Fiumicino

FCO di Fiumicino is a pizzeria in Old Montreal that serves excellent Italian food and on top of their delicious pizza, they also offer very good gelati. These are typical flavors you’d find in Italy like pistachio, hazelnut, and sorbets of lemon, ricotta and cinnamon. If you are looking to have your tastebuds remind you of that epic Italian vacay, then head to FCO di Fiumicino. And kudos to the name : FCO is the airport code for Fiumicino, Rome’s main airport. kenza_kenza
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Havres-aux-glaces CrÚmerie Montréal

Havre aux Glaces – MarchĂ© Jean-Talon

Another great name with a play on the word « havre » which can be both a ‘haven’ or a ‘port’, both work perfectly when it comes to their fantastic artisanal ice creams and sorbets. The first location opened in 2004 inside the Jean-Talon Market, and since then, owners Robert and Richard Laplante have added three more (Atwater Market, rue Fleury, Quartier des spectacles). Get a chocolate ice cream with 70% pure chocolate, or pistachio, apricot milk, maple caramel brĂ»lĂ© (our favorite). The sorbet choices we fell for are the grapefruit, mango, and Quebec strawberry (when available !). All four locations are worth trying. Alison Slattery — Instagram
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Special Mentions

  • Have you already seen a photo of a La Diperie ice cream? They are gigantic!  La Diperie is known for its 20 or so dips and toppings so choosing these is a lot of fun as well. The ice cream itself is good, but with all the extras, you end up with an even more delicious treat. Creating your own custom ice cream with all the different options is what makes La Diperie an ice cream destination.
  • Roberto’s is a cafĂ©/bistro that has been in operation since 1982, selling sandwiches, salads, coffees and a few Italian products.  But it’s at the adjoining « Gelateria Roberto » where the myriad of gelati will tempt your tastebuds. This is gelati made with high-quality ingredients, free of preservatives and artificial additives. Just reading the list of flavours makes your mouth water eg. wild berries, TiramisĂč, pistachio, mint Stracciatella, melon, coconut, salted caramel, crunchy rum and of course chocolate and vanilla. There are more.
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