If you follow the Foggy Bottoms Boys on social media – it’s the beloved Ferndale-based farm headed by self-described “fabulously gay farmers” Cody and Thomas Nicholson Stratton – then you already know that the dynamic duo recently announced plans to open an ice cream shop, where they will be serving artisanal soft-serve and classic ice cream made from the milk of their own Jersey cows.
Though the Boys have been intentionally tight-lipped about the name and location of their newest venture, on Friday morning Thomas gave the Outpost the full scoop. In honor of the cows from which their milk comes, the new ice cream will be called Jersey Scoop and, as many people already guessed on Facebook and Instagram and maybe if they’ve noticed the “coming soon” sign already on the window, the shop will take over the space previously occupied by the Loleta Bakery.
“It’s really exciting for us,” Nicholson Stratton told the Outpost, adding that the space, which has a somewhat controversial history, has been vacant for a long time. With the bakery’s closure, plus the more recent closure of the once very popular Loleta Cheese Factory, Loleta has been in an economic slump and Foggy Bottoms is hoping to help breathe life back into the town’s Main Street. “We absolutely believe in the concept of not just us thriving, but multiple other businesses coming in and thriving.”
The space will basically be Foggy Bottoms Boys’ new headquarters, Nicholson Stratton said, with a main office where people can place orders for dairy and meat products and book tours of the farm. It will also have a kitchen, industrial freezers to hold their products, and the ice cream shop. The shop will include a classic ice cream-dipping cabinet with rotating, seasonal flavors, and — possibly even more exciting — a soft-serve machine, which will include one featured flavor that changes weekly. In addition to the ice cream, the shop will serve some other light fare, including sandwiches, soups and pastries from Ferndale bakery Patches’ Pastries. You’ll also be able to buy pints of the artisanal ice cream to take with you.
Jersey Scoop ice cream will also be available for purchase in local grocery stores. At least to start, Nicholson Stratton said, the company will release two flavors for the stores – one will be a rich and creamy classic vanilla, and the other will be a new “fun flavor.” But the name and flavor of the new ice cream is something Nicholson Stratton was not willing to share yet.
“That info is for sure under wraps,” he said. Nicholson Stratton’s other half, Cody, posted a social media contest asking for flavor name suggestions. They didn’t end up using any of the names, exactly, Nicholson Stratton said, but they did base the name on one of the suggestions.
As far as when this will all happen, Nicholson Stratton said the company still has to go through some inspection processes and is shooting to have the ice cream shop open by mid-summer. Because the process for being able to sell products in grocery stores is a little more arduous, he said, it will probably take a bit longer for the ice cream pints to hit shelves.
If you are just so excited to taste the creamy treats of Jersey Scoop that you can’t wait until then, Nicholson Stratton said that the farmers plan to have their ice cream available at the Arcata Farmers Market before they have them anyplace else. The hope is to have ice cream pints available for purchase at their Farmers’ Market booth within the next month.
The other great way to help ensure the ice cream business gets going as quickly as possible is to help support the Foggy Bottoms Boys by purchasing their products (if you don’t already).
“What will help us get there [is] if anybody wants to go to Foggy Bottoms Boys and order and pick up at the Farmers’ Market or order and we can deliver to you on Sundays; that would be great,” Nicholson Stratton said.
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