SOFT SERVE IS TO CREEMEES AS SODA IS TO POP
You come to Vermont. You decide to get ice cream. You approach the ice cream stand and on the menu you see this item called a “creemee”. Though the picture looks like soft serve, the name suggests something completely different. So what’s the deal? What’s with this Vermont creemee business?
So you are right: creemees are essentially soft serve ice cream. It’s ice cream pumped through a machine to make it more airy and soft. Simple enough.
Now take a deep dive into the history and etymology of this Vermont summer staple, and that is when everything becomes a bit more complicated.
HISTORY OF THE SOFT SERVE
WHY A "CREEMEE"?
The origin for the word is murky. You might claim it came from the fact Vermont used to make their ice cream with a much higher butterfat content, leaving the ice cream with a creamier texture. Or perhaps more simply, Vermont got ahold of a soft serve ice cream machine seven decades ago and started describing the ice cream as “creamy”.
Then there is the debacle about the spelling. You may ask, “Why not creamy or creamee?” Well, we don’t know that either. Someone down the line suggested the name and it stuck.
THE VERMONT’S TWIST
In addition to your more traditional creemee flavors like chocolate and vanilla, Vermont is renowned for its maple creemee. There is a science to creating this Vermont delicacy. Maple creemee makers carefully monitor the proportion of syrup to its buttermilk base to ensure the creemee is not too sweet where customers will be too thirsty to order another cone. And much like how your average cremee is processed, the maple creemee is pumped with air to create those soft, billowy peaks.
Hot tip: Order a maple and black raspberry twist!