Ice Cream News

Richardson firefighter and top foodie opens cheeky new ice cream shop

Richardson firefighter and top foodie opens cheeky new ice cream shop

Roky Erickson Ice Cream Social
New ice cream shop arrives just in time for summer. Courtesy photo

In time for summer comes Tongue in Cheek Ice Cream, a new shop in Richardson at 526 W. Arapaho Rd., opening in early July.

Tongue in Cheek is from Brett Smith, who serves as a fireman for the city of Richardson. Tongue in Cheek is his next act: After he retires in about a year, he'll transition into running it full time.

"I've always had a passion for food, and knew I wanted to do something in the food industry after my time as a fireman," he says. "You can ask anybody at the fire department in Richardson who the best cooks are, and I think I would come up in the top two or three names every time."

He honed his skills working at a local shop, making ice cream for about three years.

"After two weeks, I decided that's what I wanted to do," he says. "The idea has been in my brain for a long time and in the planning stages for the past several years."

He also likes that ice cream has universal appeal. "Ice cream has one of the largest markets — everyone from six months to 100 years old likes ice cream," he says.

He'll do a small-batch creamery operation, with a base list of 24 flavors that include not only staples like chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry but also some of his creative twists, such as bourbon vanilla, spicy honey, lavender, chocolate whiskey cake, mango habanero, and a collection of candy bar flavors such as Snickers.

That also includes a selection of four to five nondairy options, including sorbets and coconut-milk ice creams that he says taste very similar to Italian gelato.

"Honestly, I have 100-plus flavors, but there's only room for so many — that's part of my struggle," he says.

As for the location, most recently Kabobi Fresh Express, he says he eyed it for many years. It comes with a drive-thru window, where customers can get coffee, shakes, and other to-go items, and a patio with seating that includes a swing.

"My fire station is right down the street, where I've worked for almost 10 years," he says. "I'd drive by in the fire engine and always thought, 'That'd be a great spot for an ice cream shop."