Ice cream and good music, the balms in my Gilead

Posted in Duff 'n Stuff, Music

Kapaw’s Iskreme in Coupeville serves homemade ice cream through the summer season.


Duff ‘n Stuff, Aug. 14, 2012

The deliciousness of certain things in life is a blessing that I cherish. Ice cream is one of them.

I think this fondness goes beyond the palate and is connected to memories of my childhood, which was full of happy moments and quite a bit of brouhaha around ice cream, as I recall.

I recently had a cone from Kapaw’s Iskreme in Coupeville and felt as though the sweet balm of summer had landed on my tongue. It was a flavor of the chocolate variety, Rocky Road to be exact, and it was sweet, creamy and extraordinarily delicious.

I remember chasing the ice cream truck down the sandy, pine-needled roads of Cape Cod every summer as a child, when there were hard choices to make. Was it going to be the rainbow rocket ice pop, or the toasted almond bar, or the classic ice cream sandwich? Or maybe it was a day for the tart and delicious lemon ice that you got to scrape with that odd-shaped flat, wooden spoon and drag along your tongue for a cold blast of lemony, sour sweetness. Those were the days.

Whenever my mother sent my father to the store for a bucket of ice cream, she would admonish him not to come back with some “wacky” flavor nobody but he would want. Notoriously, he would accommodate her with a half gallon of chocolate, or vanilla, or everybody’s favorite, Neapolitan. But also, there would be a second half gallon of something like pineapple-orange dream, black cherry surprise, banana split supreme, or some other flavor that revealed his big kid tastes for fun flavors. And, even though none of us liked his eccentric taste in ice cream, we all quietly loved him for the big kid flavor of his heart.

Homemade cones are full of enticing colorful treats at Kapaw’s ice cream counter in Coupeville.

I think Dad would’ve gone for the blackberry at Kapaw’s, where everything is homemade, of course, including the waffle cones, and all of it just a hop, skip and a jump into little downtown Coupeville on Front Street.

How could such a relatively small parcel of land as Whidbey Island be so lucky as to have more than one homemade ice cream factory? It’s true. Whidbey Island Ice Cream near Double Bluff also makes the sweet and creamy stuff in 45 flavors using all natural ingredients. WIIC is a little bigger of an operation than Kapaw’s, and rather than scooping it into cones over the counter for just the summer season, the brand is available in many locations in Seattle and on the island in pints and chocolate covered bars in about 32 locations, including Red Apple stores, the Star Stores, Payless Foods and Saars.

Speaking of balms, I was lucky enough to get a seat on Saturday evening at the Whidbey Island Music Festival, where it was my ears this time that were getting a delicious treat.

Four extraordinarily gifted musicians performed solo works of Johann Sebastian Bach for lute, flute, cello and violin at St. Augustine’s in-the-Woods in Freeland.

The musicians were Michael LeFevre, guitar (rather than lute); Janet See, baroque flute; Tanya Tomkins, baroque cello; and festival founder Tekla Cunningham, baroque violin.

The sounds these musicians made were absolutely exquisite and I felt lucky to be hearing the 300-year-old music of one of the greatest composers the world has ever known. After Tomkins finished the “Suite in G major, BWV 1007,” an accomplished classical musician friend I was with said, “She just played the hell out that thing.”

Indeed, all of them played the hell out of  that thing (Bach) as far I am concerned, and I will officially declare now that the music of J.S. Bach, like homemade ice cream, easily fits my list of balms for all Gileads.

From the heart,

Patricia Duff

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