I love Philadelphia-style Italian water ice, specifically Rita's, which I first had probably 20 years ago while visiting my college roommate who happened to be from Philadelphia, and have had countless times since. Having lived in California my entire life, water ice is in short supply if not entirely absent. People here tend not to know what it is. I manage to get a fix every now and then in Philadelphia and had one recently in fact. So I was excited to read on this board about Frozen Aces, which serves up the water ice and the frozen custard. We drive to Vegas several times a year, so I vowed to check out Frozen Aces on our next trip.
We stopped in last Sunday afternoon. The store was entirely without customers, which was pretty surprising given the heat. However, the mini-mall in which it's located doesn't have a lot of tenants yet, so there isn't any foot traffic. The owners have done some promotions but clearly they could use, and deserve, more business.
I sampled a few flavors: peach, orange, dark cherry and moccachino. The textures varied from super soft (just made) to a bit crunchier (maybe made a couple of hours prior). The peach was peachy but slightly too peachy for my taste. The orange tasted kind of like a creamsicle. I liked them both well enough, but decided on the moccachino. My husband settled on the dark cherry which I didn't like at all but he loved. They had a lot of other flavors but sadly no root beer which is my favorite at Rita's. The fellow who served us said that green apple is one of their most popular flavors.
I would say I haven't noticed the textural variation between flavors at Rita's but usually I don't do samples there because I know which flavors I like. The softest ice at Frozen Aces was the most like Rita's. The crunchiest wasn't overly crunchy, I would still categorize it as water ice as opposed to something like a snow cone.
The frozen custard was a stark shade of white. The texture was perfectly smooth and the flavor was fine although I would've preferred some more vanilla oomph. But texturally it was a winner for sure, and I'm picky about my frozen custard since I've been to frozen custard nirvana (Kopps in Milwaukee) many, many times. Frozen Aces serves the gelati - a blob of custard, the ice, more custard on top. The regular size gelati was $3.19 I think. I managed to finish mine although I was still full from our lunch with JanetofReno at Viva Zapata's.
If I lived in Vegas I'd be at Frozen Aces all the time, so it's a good thing I don't, but you locals who read this, please patronize this place.
5135 S. Fort Apache Road, Las Vegas
(just southwest of Tropicana and the 215)
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