The first thing you notice upon entering Blank Slate Creamery is the smell. It’s like you’re stepping inside a waffle cone, bathing your senses in the sweet vanilla and waves of heavy cream. Then you notice the actual ice cream — all-natural, made from scratch right at their facilities and featuring exotic flavors like Blueberry Pancake and Bananas Foster. Those were the two I picked, but Blank Slate is the kind of place where you can order anything and count on loving it. Owner Janice Sigler and her family taste-test every flavor before it goes into the store’s display cases (and your waffle cone).

The second thing you notice about Blank Slate is the friendly atmosphere — it’s the kind of place where the owner might stand by the tables and chat with patrons. Customers are encouraged to write on the shop’s “blank slate” chalkboard tables and to draw or write while enjoying their ice cream. The place is frequently busy, but never feels overpacked or hectic; its West Liberty location is large enough to hold the ice cream’s processing machinery and seat a few dozen guests.

Blank Slate is beginning its second year of operation with new equipment and a few upcoming flavors (look for Chocolate Cherry Bourbon), but devoted patrons can expect some things to stay the same. The unparalleled fresh, wholesome ice cream and enthusiastic environment are here to stay.

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