Every campus tour mentions Wellesley’s undeniably most important feature: our ice cream endowment. Though we have not been able to officially confirm that this specific endowment exists, we do know that the ice cream itself does, and in abundance. Now, as midterm season is in full swing and our stress eating has commenced with a fury, we have decided to take a deep dive into Wellesley’s ice cream culture — never mind the freezing cold weather. The Wellesley News sent out a survey to determine the most popular and despised flavors on campus, and the results were deliciously shocking.
The Wellesley News learned that all of the ice cream flavors, with the exception of Bates’ in-house gelato, are produced by Hershey’s Creamery. This is not the same as the better known Hershey’s Company, which is famous for its candy and other products. The two companies have, in fact, had several high-profile trademark disputes. At Wellesley, the creamy treats are distributed through Hershey’s Colleges and Universities ice cream program. Though Hershey does not list bulk prices for its ice cream in Massachusetts on its website, a 2007 New Jersey government document states that each three-gallon bulk container of ice cream, frozen yogurt or sorbet sells for about $24.
The Wellesley News asked students about their favorite specialty flavors at Wellesley and received 61 responses. The survey revealed that Graham Central Station and Better Brownie Batter are tied for most popular specialty flavors at Wellesley by a landslide. Each ice cream received 16 votes for the most popular flavor, tallying in at 26 percent. The tie was a shock to our editors, given Central’s fame on campus and in the newsroom. The ice cream has an entire Instagram account (@graham.central.station) devoted only to spotting the popular flavor in dining halls on campus, and it boasts an impressive 236 followers.
The owners of the popular Instagram page sent a limerick to The Wellesley News expressing their love for the popular ice cream flavor. “There was once an ice cream / named Graham / Of which we were all such a big / Stan / The chocolate was clutch / And you may eat too much / But it always makes you say, / Goddamn,” the poem reads.
In spite of Graham Central’s online following, Better Brownie Batter is, according to the students who filled out our survey, equally popular. Some honorable mentions include Black Raspberry (11.4%), Banana Pudding (1%) and Moose Tracks (1%). Given the overwhelming popularity of Graham Central and Better Brownie Batter, the other 11 ice cream flavors mentioned in our survey received less than 1% of the total votes, happening once in a Blue Moon (0.01%). Regardless of their individual preferences, it’s clear that students love Wellesley’s unlimited access to ice cream.
As one survey respondent put it, “I love, love, LOVE the ice cream at Wellesley. I’m a sucker for fruit and have tried everything from the mango sorbet to Whitehouse Cherry.” They also noted that this year’s seasonal fall flavors were a success. “I loved the fall specialties: pumpkin spice was a surprise hit. I also really enjoyed the house-made green apple, which had a very crisp and apple-like taste to it, but found that Apple Pie had too high of a cinnamon content for me to fully enjoy it,” they said.
The Wellesley News also asked students about their least favorite specialty flavors on campus. While Graham Central Station and Better Brownie Batter are the crown jewels of Wellesley’s ice cream hierarchy, Magical Unicorn is overwhelmingly the most despised flavor in the game. 37.8% of students said that the colorful and cloyingly sweet flavor was their least favorite on campus. Banana Pudding and Cotton Candy tied for second least popular flavor on campus, each receiving 18.9% of the votes. Interestingly, Banana Pudding also ranked among students’ favorite specialty flavors, making it a highly contested scoop.
The specialty flavors appear in all of the dining halls at given points in the semester. However, our survey found that not all dining halls are created equally when it comes to chilling with a bowl of ice cream. Our survey found that Tower is the most popular spot on campus to enjoy a scoop, receiving 39.1% of the total votes. Pomeroy (30.4%), Bates (26.1%) and Lulu (21.7%) came in second, third and fourth place respectively. Stone Davis the least popular place to go for ice cream on campus, receiving 0% of the total votes.
One of our survey participants had almost the exact opposite opinion about the ice cream scenes on campus. This participant feels that Tower’s ice cream is both “frozen [and] hard”, while Pomeroy’s scoops can be too soft. However, the student feels that “Stone D and Lulu variate between the two, sometimes settling in a just perfect texture of cold but easy to scoop. Bates easily has the best ice cream texture.”
Ultimately, every student has a different opinion when it comes to the best ice cream on campus. Two of our editors ranked their favorite three specialty flavors at Wellesley:
SOPHIE’S SPICIEST SCOOPS:
- Magical Unicorn: It tastes like pixie sticks mixed with sweet cream ice cream, and those are both things I love. It’s rainbow, which to me, says gay rights.
- Chocolate Truffle: Sophisticated!
- Bates cinnamon gelato: Because the Bates gelato is really the only thing I’ll commute to East Side for.
ERIN’S ELEGANT ENJOYMENTS:
- Graham Central Station: I swear I’m a leader, not a follower.
- Banana Pudding: Because Mom says to eat fruit with every meal.
- Magical Unicorn: I stand in solidarity with @sophiehurwitz.
There is only one question that has yet to be answered: is the graham cracker or the chocolate the best part of Graham Central Station?