REVIEW: Haagen-Dazs Spirits Collection Ice Cream (U.S.)

Haagen Dazs Spirits Collection Ice Cream

Judging from the length of their corresponding aisles at the grocery store, it’s no secret that Americans love alcohol and ice cream. Despite this, mergers between the two seem rare with mainstream brands.

Befitting of the most drunken-sounding ice cream brand, Haagen-Dazs has risen to fill this void of boozy frozen desserts with the release of its new Spirits Collection. Each pint features a different variety of popular liquor, paired alongside indulgent mix-ins, and Haagen-Dazs’ famously rich ice cream.

Bourbon Vanilla Bean Truffle

Haagen Dazs Spirits Collection Bourbon Vanilla Bean Truffle

Perhaps the most basic of the bunch, this offering blends classic vanilla ice cream with miniature chocolate truffles and a spicy bourbon swirl.

Although that description may sound unexciting when compared to this line’s other offerings, this flavor goes to show that ice cream doesn’t have to be complicated to be good. With a dense, sweet, vanilla bean-flecked base, I found it easy to appreciate this variety’s superb consistency and mouthfeel, and the tiny truffles dotted throughout helped to provide intermittent bursts of crunch and texture.

Rather than finding distinct ribbons of bourbon swirled throughout, I tasted hints of booze in each spoonful and found the alcohol’s slight edge helped to make this flavor seem like an “adult’s only” version of vanilla bean ice cream.

Purchased Price: $4.39
Purchased at: Food Lion
Size: 14 fl. oz.
Rating: 8 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (2/3 cup) 340 calories, 20 grams of fat, 12 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 80 milligrams of cholesterol, 60 milligrams of sodium, 36 grams of total carbohydrates, 0 grams of dietary fiber, 34 grams of total sugars, 29 grams of added sugars, and 4 grams of protein.

Rum Tres Leches

Haagen Dazs Spirits Collection Rum Tres Leches

This flavor swirls a trio of south-of-the-border indulgences — generous chunks of tres leches, dulce de leche, and a rum-infused base.

Don’t speak Spanish? Then I’ll translate for you – this is a white rum ice cream with chunks of cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk and ribbons of gooey caramel sauce. And, yes, it’s as tooth-achingly sweet as it sounds.

Although I like each component individually, they’re too much when together. The alcohol, although detectable, is much more muted than in the Bourbon Vanilla Truffle, and the milk-soaked cake pieces were surprisingly dry and stale. Rather than buying this, I’d recommend heading down to your local Mexican restauranté and drinking a mojito or two alongside a slice of traditionally prepared Tres Leches.

Purchased Price: $4.39
Purchased at: Food Lion
Size: 14 fl. oz.
Rating: 5 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (2/3 cup) 360 calories, 21 grams of fat, 13 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 85 milligrams of cholesterol, 105 milligrams of sodium, 38 grams of total carbohydrates, 0 grams of dietary fiber, 35 grams of total sugars, 25 grams of added sugars, and 5 grams of protein.

Irish Cream Brownie

Haagen Dazs Spirits Collection Irish Cream Brownie

Voyaging across the Atlantic, this St. Patrick’s Day-approved variety utilizes an Irish cream-flavored base, brownie chunks, and a fudge swirl.

Calling the brownie bits “chunks” is being pretty generous, though, because I got very few fully intact pieces in my pint. Instead, most were obliterated in a brownie crumb explosion that masked whatever pitiful amount of fudge swirl Haagen-Dazs managed to get into this flavor.

I didn’t think the Irish Cream base was anything special, either. It tasted good – all Haagen-Dazs tastes good – but I would have been just as happy to pour some Baileys on top of a scoop of its vanilla ice cream.

Purchased Price: $4.39
?Purchased at: Food Lion
Size: 14 fl. oz.
Rating: 6 out of 10
?Nutrition Facts: (2/3 cup) 360 calories, 21 grams of total fat, 11 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 80 milligrams of cholesterol, 140 milligrams of sodium, 37 grams of total carbohydrates, 1 gram of dietary fiber, 25 grams of added sugars, and 5 grams of protein.

Stout Chocolate Pretzel Crunch

Haagen Dazs Spirits Collection Stout Chocolate Pretzel Crunch

Also drawing inspiration from Ireland, this pub-grub-styled dessert features stout-infused chocolate ice cream mixed with chocolate covered pretzels and a fudge swirl.

Similar to the previous flavor, this variety also suffered from having a less than impressive fudge swirl. Even so, I didn’t find myself missing the swirl’s added richness as much here, because I thought the chocolate stout base was plenty satisfying by itself. Although I had initially been concerned about its boozy infusion being covered up by cocoa, my concerns were unjustified, as the two flavors work to complement one another well.

The chocolate covered pretzels were similarly well-executed. I find that most pretzels tend to get soggy in ice cream, but these were pleasantly crunchy and added a needed pop of salt that helped to break through the dessert’s richness.

Purchased Price: $4.39
Purchased at: Food Lion
Size: 14 fl. oz.

Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (2/3 cup) 360 calories, 19 grams of total fat, 13 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 80 milligrams of cholesterol, 130 milligrams of sodium, 41 grams of total carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 32 grams of total sugars, 27 grams of added sugars, and 6 grams of protein.

Conclusion:

Although each of these flavors has minor flaws, Haagen-Dazs is definitely on the right track by expanding its library of desserts to include its Spirits Collection. I only hope other brands will follow its lead because booze-infused ice cream is a trend that I can get behind!

9 thoughts to “REVIEW: Haagen-Dazs Spirits Collection Ice Cream (U.S.)”

      1. It’s fair to say that the alcohol is probably the divisive aspect of these ice creams. I love hard liquor, so I loved these ice creams, but my mother can’t stand anything made with “brown liquor” (so, in other words, bourbon, whiskey, rum, and beer), so she didn’t care for any one of these.

  1. I had the complete opposite reaction to the stout one. It was SO boozy, I tossed the whole thing after a few bites! And I found the texture of the pretzel blobs to be off-putting. Guinness is my drink of choice, but it made a terrible ice cream.

    On the other hand, I liked the brownie flakes all the way through the Irish cream one. Very nice.

  2. The amaretto black cherry almond toffee was by far the best one in the line. I’m guessing it wasn’t included because it’s non-dairy. If you’re going to buy any of them get the amaretto.

  3. I tried the Bourbon and found it excessively sweet and no real Bourbon taste. I like sweets, but I don’t see the point for so much sugar, honey and maple syrup. The taste was too fragrant and artificial. More booze and less maple syrup taste could be a winner.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.