Connie Brown, owner of Brown Cow Ice Cream Parlor, is making big changes to her business, including bringing the creamery in-house. | Alex Rogals, Staff Photographer

“I am just so excited to serve ice cream again,” said Connie Brown, owner of The Brown Cow, 7347 Madison St. “And I am so excited to see actual customers again.”

After a six-month closure, the beloved ice cream parlor, known for churning up nostalgia with every scoop, is set to re-open after the completion of renovations supported by the community. A staged re-opening will start with the bakery opening next week followed by a grand re-opening on April 17. The celebration will reveal The Brown Cow’s new in-house creamery and reinstate ice cream service.

After COVID-related supply chain interruptions forced Brown to close her shop last August the community rallied around her to raise $62,000 to assist in the construction of an in-house creamery. Though the project went $80,000 over budget the community donations helped Brown purchase both the blast freezer and batch freezer essential to producing ice cream on site.

“Thankfully, I had savings I could put into the project,” said Brown. “We wanted to do it right and I really look forward to everyone in the community experiencing what they made happen. I am so grateful for their generosity and support.”

Though the “behemoth project” yielded new floors, remodeled bathrooms, and even reimagined mop closets, the shiny new creamery is the most exciting aspect of the new and improved Brown Cow. A big view window will allow guests, young and old, to witness the ice cream making process while moving the counter will help service in the shop become more efficient.

The property improvements also generated five new jobs within the combination soda fountain, boutique bakery and creamery. In addition to welcoming back the entire team of 23 employees who have worked at the shop over the last two summers, Brown will now employee a manufacturing manager, two creamery assistants, a bakery assistant, and an office manager. The Brown Cow is currently hiring.

The shop’s menu has been streamlined to offer 16 house-made ice cream flavors daily. Brown Cow’s beloved peanut butter-chocolate and cookies and cream flavors will be available daily along with traditional chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry. Novelty flavors will rotate on and off the menu.

“I can introduce new flavors more frequently because we can make smaller batches on-site,” said Brown. “We are focused on using locally sourced ingredients.”

Brown is eager to get creative in the creamery and is considering adding flavors like marzipan-cherry, pina colada, and salted pretzel to her ice cream arsenal. Visions for a “crunch cream” would make use of French creams from La Maison de Bonbon, at 7353 Madison St. Some final flavor decisions will come as result of the interactive New Flavor Madness contest being hosted on the shop’s Facebook page during March.

“We anticipated reopening in January,” said Brown. “This creamery has been six months in the making and I know how patient everyone has been.”

When the shop opens ice cream sundaes, malts and sodas will be offered in the shop for carryout only and single scoops will be offered through the diminutive walk-up window. The Brown Cow is offering VIP memberships to give loyal customers early access to new flavors and yearlong discounts.

Brown Cow will be accepting cake orders in time for Easter.

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