Hop on the BRICS Train

A Bar Mitzvah can be a transformative experience for a young man. He reads from the Torah for the first time. He is officially considered an adult in the Jewish community. He celebrates with family and friends. For a lucky couple of Indy natives, he might also find his future business partner.

David Vonnegut-Gabovitch (yes, THAT Vonnegut… David’s wife is related to Kurt ) and David DuBow met each other at a Bar Mitzvah (they can’t quite remember whose it was) and have been friends since age 13. Throughout junior high, high school, college, and adulthood, they remained close friends. Five years ago, they wanted to enrich the community in which they’d grown up and loved for so many years, and established BRICS: Broad Ripple Ice Cream Station. Located in the original Broad Ripple train station on the Monon trail, BRICS was founded as a two-family venture hoping to provide many Indy families with delicious ice cream, sweet memories, and happy times. Mission Accomplished. Mazel Tov.

In five years, not much has changed from that original vision. BRICS is committed to being environmentally friendly and as sustainable as possible. That is not a light undertaking in an ice cream shop. All sample spoons are “real” metal spoons (saving all those plastic spoons), ice cream is served in a glass parfait dish, water is served in glasses; even their water fountain has an attachment to help runners, walkers and bikers fill their water bottles. Passion for community sustainability comes from Vonnegut-Gabovitch’s wife, but the entire establishment embraces the commitment. Their ice cream comes from Sherman Ice Cream, a hundred-year old company located in South Haven, Michigan. Deliveries are made fresh every week, and flavors are as reliable as they are different. There are always 24 permanent flavors and 12 rotating flavors. Sherman’s was an intentional and well-thought out pick. Many Hoosiers were familiar with the family-owned establishment from vacations on Lake Michigan, and Sherman’s delivers a delicious, quality product that is affordable for families. Affordability and sustainability have always been at the core of BRICS, and they’ve stayed true to their vision.

The Davids say one of the most rewarding parts of operating BRICS for the past five years has been watching families grow up. First dates became couples, couples got married, children have been born, and each year they value being a part of these families and the larger Broad Ripple family. “It’s great to be the place that people are excited to come to; happy to get a treat, enjoy an old building, and be recipients of wonderful service,” says DuBow. It’s easy to feel like family when you walk into BRICS. There are friendly smiles behind the counters, the employees circling with water glasses, a charming interior, and a deck filled with kids, adults, and puppies. For those of you with canines in the family, rest assured that they too can have a sweet treat from BRICS: a homemade ice cream treat for free!

If choosing the perfect ice cream is overwhelming, I highly encourage a split scoop of strawberry and chocolate choo-choo, the perfect combination of fruit and dark chocolate is amazing. The strawberry has real bits of fruit in it, making it a summer favorite for me. The dark chocolate is creamy, and isn’t overwhelmingly sweet, as some ice creams can be. It’s clear that real milk, real ingredients, and a lot of love goes into the ice cream. That’s one of the benefits of having Sherman’s as BRICS’ supplier. Their ice cream is all churned by hand, the same way it was established 100 years ago. For those of you whose eyes tend to be bigger than their stomachs, be warned that BRICS has a very generous definition of “one scoop”. Prepare yourself for a huge bowl of ice cream, no matter what flavor you choose. Other solid choices are grasshopper (mint with chocolate chip) or Monon tracks (vanilla and chocolate swirl ice cream with peanut butter filled chocolate bits). For dairy-free patrons, BRICS offers coconut milk-based flavors and sherbet. Don’t let dietary restrictions keep you from enjoying a summer staple!

Come Sunday, May 31st, it won’t just be puppy treats that are free. To thank the Indianapolis, and specifically the Broad Ripple Village, community for five years of business, love, and laughter, BRICS will be hosting an anniversary celebration from noon-10 p.m. All ice cream scoops are free (yes, free. You read that right). BRICS simply asks that you consider a donation (if you are able) to the Broad Ripple Village Association. The celebration will feature music from a local favorite, Haley Jonay, a North Central jazz combo, some contests, giveaways, and of course, delicious ice cream.

Written by: Molly Sender

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