Herrell's Ice Cream

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Herrell's Ice Cream
Franchises, Wholesale (hot fudge)
IndustryFrozen Food Industry
Founded1980; Northampton, Massachusetts
Area served
Stores in:
ProductsDesserts, mainly ice cream

Herrell's Ice Cream is a chain of ice cream stores located in Massachusetts and New York, featuring over 200 homemade flavors.


Steve's Ice Cream[edit]

Steve's Ice Cream was founded in 1973 in Somerville, Massachusetts by Steve Herrell. By mechanically altering a small batch commercial freezer, Herrell produced an extraordinarily rich, creamy, low-air ice cream.[1] Herrell was introduced to the Heath candy bar by a friend in the late 1960s and felt that it would make an excellent addition to ice cream. When he opened his first store, instead of having pre-mixed flavors like chocolate chip, he had his staff mix freshly made ice cream with candy or other confections based upon customer requests. These candy additions later became known as smoosh-ins. The custom-blended flavors proved to be highly desired by customers, and Steve sold out of ice cream on his first day open.[1] The store became very popular in a short time.[2][3]

Herrell sold his company to Joe Crugnale, the future founder of the Bertucci's restaurant chain, in 1977.[4]

Herrell's Ice Cream[edit]

After selling Steve's Ice Cream, Steve moved to Northampton, Massachusetts. The sale agreement included a three year non-compete clause.[5] After this expired in 1980, he opened Herrell's Ice Cream, bringing with him all of the original recipes and techniques he used at Steve's.[1]


The flagship store and corporate headquarters is located in Northampton, Massachusetts. In 1982, a second store opened in Harvard Square in Cambridge, Massachusetts and is now closed. Another store at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams, Massachusetts, opened in 1996. The newest store in Huntington, New York, opened in 2008.[1]

In September 2009, the franchise owner of the Harvard Square location announced that he would close the ice cream parlor and replace it with a pub. This closure comes just months after another location in Allston, Massachusetts also closed, leaving only a handful of stores still open.[6][7] In 2008 Herrell's was split into two businesses, Herrell’s Development, which is run by Judy Herrell (Steve and Judy were divorced in 2000) which deals with franchisees, and Herrell’s Ice Cream, run by Steve, which handles the store in Northampton.[8] The Allston Herrell's closed after disputes with how the franchise business was being run; it became Allston Cafe, selling Coop's Ice Cream, Allston Cafe has since closed.[9]

Critical opinion[edit]

USA Today named Herrell's #2 in the nation.[10] Newsweek mentioned Herrell's "uncompromising quality" and called it "a mecca for ice cream lovers".[11] In 2000, Julia Child called Herrell's ice cream "delicious".[12]


  1. ^ a b c d "History of Herrell's". Archived from the original on 2009-06-28. Retrieved 2009-10-05.
  2. ^ Eric Asimov (1987-08-27). "Heath Bar finds its Metier:Ice Cream". Article. the New York Times. Retrieved 2007-12-22. Steve Herrell didn't know a Heath bar from a hole in a doughnut until a friend gave him one in the late 1960s. But when he tasted the milk-chocolate-covered bar of crunchy toffee, he recalled, he had a single, all-penetrating inspiration: "This would be great with ice cream!"
  3. ^ Andrea Pyenson (2001-08-16). "Recalling a luscious loss of innocence". Column. the Boston Globe. p. H7. Retrieved 2007-12-22. (Subscription required (help)). He picked me up, and we eagerly negotiated our way through the back streets of Somerville, until we arrived at the spot of our assignation: Steve's. The original, unbeatable, often-imitated-but-never-equaled Steve's Ice Cream.
  4. ^ The Washington Post, 7/24/1983, "Ice Cream Wars: The Terrible Swift Umlaut", p. C1
  5. ^ http://businesswest.com/blog/cold-artist/
  6. ^ Abelson, Jenn (17 September 2009). "Herrell's will close Harvard Square ice cream shop". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 2009-09-17.
  7. ^ Rosenbaum, S.I. (23 June 2009). "Punk rock creamery takes stand". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 2009-09-17.
  8. ^ Kavoussi, Bonnie (16 July 2010). "Scooping out new digs". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 2012-02-25.
  9. ^ Rocheleau, Matt (11 November 2010). "Allston Cafe to close after 26 ; owner hopes to open elsewhere". Boston.com. Retrieved 2012-02-25.
  10. ^ USA Today 7/24/1998, "10 great places to get the scoop", Rick Sebak
  11. ^ Newsweek 1/2/1989, "I Scream, You Scream: Boston screams for Steve's new ice cream"
  12. ^ Bon Appetit, July 2003, "Mister Mix-In", Joan Nathan, p. 87

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 42°19′4.4″N 72°37′51.4″W / 42.317889°N 72.630944°W / 42.317889; -72.630944