For those of you not in the know, Shake Shack is something of a New York institution. It's a stand (or shack, if you will) that sells milkshakes (and burgers, fries, and frozen custard), and is known for its regular wait of an hour or more. It started with one location in Madison Square Park, and expanded not too long ago to an indoor spot on the Upper West Side, and more recently to Citi Field. There will also be two new openings this summer, according to the Shake Shack website. Though the UWS spot tends to have shorter lines (and it's open all year-round and you can feasibly eat there when it's raining), the Madison Square Park location is still king. Plus, after eating burgers at dozens of places in NY, I think Shake Shack's are the best in the city. But that's another story--the frozen custard is the focus today!
Shake Shack has a rotating roster of unexpected frozen custard flavors. You get a different one each day of the week, and the schedule changes each month. This month, flavors include such yummy-sounding fare as "milk & honey" (Thursday) and "carrot cake" (Sunday). I was there on a Saturday, for which the flavor was--ready for this?--"pancakes & bacon."
Skeptical as I was at first, I simply had to remind myself that I love bacon. I love it in drinks (the Spotted Pig's bloody Mary, made with bacon-infused vodka, is to die for), I love it in chocolate (try Vosges Haute Chocolate's dark chocolate bacon bar), and I certainly love it nestled next to a plate of pancakes at brunch--so why not as a custard flavor? I tried a sample of it before totally taking the plunge, and, much to my surprise, it actually tasted like pancakes and bacon! I don't know what kind of weird lab-grown chemicals went into the making of this stuff, but at that point I didn't care. I got a Concrete (custard blended with toppings of your choice), and kept it simple with chocolate fudge sauce mixed in (I said I love bacon with chocolate, didn't I?) and whipped cream on top. It was amazing. The sweet chocolate tempered the pancake and bacon flavor quite a bit, but you could still get a hint of bacon coming through, which is usually all you really need anyways.
I sat in the park eating my bacon custard and watching squirrels for a good half-hour, enjoying the fact that summer is finally almost upon us. (And it just wouldn't be a NY summer without a few more trips to the Shack to come!)