Pittsburgh’s latest must-try ice cream can be found in Bloomfield.
Station owner Curtis Gamble has recently launched a new ice cream program at his Liberty Avenue restaurant, in addition to their regular takeout offerings.
Gamble says that since he opened the restaurant five years ago, house-made ice cream has regularly been on their dessert menu in some form, but now they’ll be offering it in tubs to go.
“We just bought a real ice cream machine, so we’re making it using a traditional method,” he says. “But basically, our point of view is on a lot of things that we do at the restaurant is that we want it to be a little traditional, but also a little unusual.”
That means creating flavors like Caramel Popcorn, Graham Cracker, Pandan… and Cheeze-It.
“I originally started working on that when I was at [former downtown restaurant] Grit & Grace,” says Gamble. “Cheddar cheese is such a Northeast staple with apple pie, so we wanted to find a way to do a smokey version of that. That turned into taking a very classic ice cream base, and adding Cheeze-Its, and salt, and it comes off as a really sweet, kind of cheesy ice cream.”
Ice cream is available in 12-ounce cartons for $8, and Gamble says that new flavors will be introduced regularly.
‘We’re thinking about doing some mix-ins,” he says. “One that we’re working on right now is a strawberry ice cream with pretzels that have been frozen in liquid nitrogen, so it will be a nice strawberry pretzel ice cream. And we’ll probably do a banana ice cream with toasted vanilla wafers, and marshmallow fluff ice cream with peanut butter later this fall.”
Eventually, Station will also offer an ice cream subscription program.
The ice cream program has been one way that Gamble and his team have been re-imagining their offerings, and the restaurant’s relationship with guests. Gamble halted operations at Station when restaurants were first closed in March, and began offering family-style takeout meals in July.
“We took all of our classic menu items that people love when we started doing family-style, and really tried to add value for people,” he says. “We added a huge salad with our meals, bread service, popcorn panna cotta. We looked at it as our guests were getting free salad, free bread and free desserts when they bought two entrees.”
Meal options include Prime Ribeye, Bone-in Pork Chops, and their much-loved Tagliatelle with Smoked Pork Shank. Additional takeout menus include seasonal items like Roasted Corn Soup, “Thicc”-cut Spaghetti with Basil & Sunflower Seed Pesto, and their classic Station Burger, which is topped with Asiago fondue, onion rings, and onion jam.
But because not everything on their regular menu was suitable for takeout, Gamble also began offering grocery items, like responsibly-sourced meats, plus burger kits and a selection of their fresh, handmade pastas for people to make their own meals at home.
“We wanted to add value for our customers, so we’re selling our fresh pasta for super cheap, with our Tagliatelle sauce and basil pesto sauce,” says Gamble.
Station also recently began offering contactless outdoor dining, though Gamble says that it may be awhile before he re-opens for indoor dining.
Family-style takeout, and ice cream, can be ordered online.
Station (4744 Liberty Avenue)