Is there anything sweeter than an Arch-side view at the July 4 fireworks show in St. Louis? The new Serendipity Homemade Ice Cream Shop ( 4400 Manchester ) will open on July 6, at 2 p.m. It’s well before its grand opening scheduled for July 17, National Ice Cream Day. The first 100 pints purchased will be given a Serendipity-logoed Ice Cream Dipper.
Beckie Jacobs, the owner of Beckie Jacobs, says that she wanted to be up-to-speed by National Ice Cream Day. “Plus, the Webster [Groves] Store was softly opened on this date almost 19 years ago. But this time, we’re experiencing pent-up demand.”
The shop, measuring 2,000 square feet, is located on the ground level of the Gateway Lofts development at 4400 Manchester. Amy and Amrit Gil of Preservation St. Louis own the mixed-use 60-unit apartment building. Nearly half of the space is used for the production and re-establishing of Serendipity’s wholesale business. Jacobs announced the new location on September 20, 2021, and the 18-year-old Webster Groves flagship store was closed in December.
Serendipity’s homemade ice cream flavors have been well-known over the years. They are served in cake cones and sugar cones as well as waffle bowls and the usual shakes and malts. You can also find more unusual offerings like bite-sized bonbons and “spirited” (boozy), shakes, and ice cream novelties such as Dipstix (a homemade Drumstick with a chocolate treat at its bottom), and Dipity Dough, which is an ice cream sandwich that you can make yourself, accompanied by a cookie, brownie or sometimes a glazed doughnut.
Jacobs was a supporter of National Ice Cream for Breakfast Day from the beginning. He often created breakfast-themed flavors for the occasion, such as Saturday Morning Cartoons, French Toast Crunch, and Maple Bacon Crunch. A Pint of the Month Club, a value-added punchcard, and Neo-of-the-Month Ice Cream–a three-flavor combination chosen by customers. It began with Luck of the Irish (Baileys and Guinness flavored ice cream).
Serendipity purchased the Fire & Ice Cream truck in 2016. This is a 1946 Ford fire truck that can be rented out for private, corporate, and personal events. Jacobs named the truck Ruthie after her mother who died just before she bought it.
Jacobs was active in the community and has continued to be so. Jacobs organized fundraisers for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri. He also helped organize Pedal the Cause and Gateway To Hope.
Serendipity will be able to expand its footprint and locate in Grove. To better fit the demographic, Jacobs is introducing expanded hours including a “coffee-to-cocktails” program, in which coffee and light pastries transition into affogatos, coffee floats (coffee over a bonbon), and more spirited shakes, as well as standard cocktails, and draft beer. The hours of operation will be expanded to include a second shift from 2 – 9 p.m. on July 17 through a third shift.
Serendipity’s pastries (muffins, croissants, cookies, etc. All pastries (e.g. croissants, cookies, etc.) will be made in-house at first and then prepared on-site. Kaldi’s will supply the coffee.
Bagel Factory will provide bagels, Jacobs calls them “the best in town”, which includes morning bagels, lox, and cream cheese. However, there won’t be any bagel sandwiches. Jacobs explains that bagels from Bagel Factory are too dense to be used in sandwiches.
Specialties include poffertjes, also known as “offers”, mini-pancakes made in the Netherlands that can be decorated with ice cream, fruit, or all three.
Serendipity’s Homemade Ice Cream will remain the main draw. Salty Caramel Swirl and Cookie Monster are the top sellers, along with vanilla. Jacobs describes What The Fudge as a salted caramel ice cream with a swirl of coarse sea salt and salted almonds. Chocolate Malt Crunch is Jacobs’ favorite. A toasted coconut lime flavor is in development, as well as a reimagination of Serendipity’s famous gooey butter cake ice cream.
Service items in-house will include silverware, glass bowls, and boats made of reusable glass.