- Associated Press - Sunday, August 2, 2015

BOTTINEAU, N.D. (AP) - You just can’t go to Bottineau without making a stop at the Dairy Dipper. At least not when ice cream or locally flavored toppings are on your mind.

The Dairy Dipper is a very popular ice cream store located inside Pride Dairy of Bottineau, which lays claim to being the “only small town creamery in North Dakota,” the Minot Daily News (http://bit.ly/1IHwxEf ) reported. The business has come a long way from the 1920s, when butter was their number one product. They still make sweet creamery butter, including flavors like honey and cinnamon, but ice cream is huge at Pride Dairy. Remarkably, they have managed to maintain a local flavor that is infinitely appealing to ice cream aficionados near and far.

The original Dairy Dipper served ice cream treats to Bottineau area residents in the 1950s, before closing in 1960. But, oh, how the delicious ice cream was missed! The cool treat was still available in grocer’s freezers, but that left customers craving for individual servings covered with tasty toppings.

“Pride Dairy has made ice cream since the early 1940s and, basically, we have not changed our recipe,” explained Jeff Beyer, Pride Dairy manager. “When I say our ice cream is made the old-fashioned way, it really is.”

The Dairy Dipper opened again five years ago and has become more and more popular with each and every serving. The reputation of the Dairy Dipper has grown faster than you can fill an ice cream cone. So much so that expansion is a possibility for the quaint shop bursting with a variety of homemade flavors such as Juneberry and chokecherry, both in ice cream and flavored toppings.

Beyer says he never ceases to be amazed by the response to products made locally in Bottineau. Pride Dairy’s Thomas Jefferson vanilla ice cream is served at Mount Rushmore where it quickly has become the best seller at the famed national monument.

Beyer said Pride Dairy researched Jefferson’s original 1780 recipe and only had to make a couple of minor changes, such as using powdered eggs rather than fresh eggs which are no longer allowed for ice cream production. Today, thousands of buckets of Thomas Jefferson ice cream are shipped from Bottineau to Mount Rushmore to meet the demand.

Beyer recently received a phone call from a man whose mother enjoyed a dish of Thomas Jefferson ice cream under the famous South Dakota monument. When she learned it was made at Pride Dairy it brought back memories of her younger days in Bottineau, the days when she indulged in black licorice ice cream from Pride Dairy.

“He called to see if we still made it, which we do,” said Beyer. “He said price was no object and that he wanted me to send two pails of black licorice ice cream to Salt Lake City, Utah, for her birthday.”

Beyer made good on the request, furthering the reach of Pride Dairy products. Many customers have submitted photographs of Pride Dairy’s homemade syrups and toppings from various places throughout the world.

“That just amazes us,” said Beyer. “When we look at our guest book, to see where all our customers come from, it’s amazing that they are able to find this little ice cream parlor tucked away in Bottineau. It’s fun for us.”

It’s fun for Dairy Dipper customers, too. Among the crowd enjoying ice cream at the Dairy Dipper recently was Sherman and Sharon Langehaug of Grand Forks. Both grew up in Bottineau. When they make return trips to visit, they never forget the Dairy Dipper.

“We always come here when we come to Bottineau,” said Sharon Langehaug. It’s a real treat. Everything is good and you always meet your neighbors and friends.”

Sherman Langehaug was seated at a table with a lengthy dish of ice cream topped with a variety of special flavorings. He was eager for the challenge.

“We can’t pass on it. The ice cream is great, as everybody knows,” said Sherman Langehaug with a wide smile. “I don’t know everything that is in this one but it looks like rhubarb and Juneberry and chocolate and it’s great!”

Sherman’s words rang true for Addie Nielson. The Bottineau resident was sharing a table in the Dairy Dipper with the Langehaugs.

“When anybody comes to Bottineau they always want to go here for ice cream,” said Nielson.

“The community and the region has supported us and families will actually bring friends here as a destination,” remarked Beyer. “For us that is one of the most wonderful compliments that people can give us.”

Ice cream made the old-fashioned way, generously drizzled with known North Dakota favorites, has proven irresistible to ice cream lovers. Each year Pride Dairy purchases and processes thousands of pounds of locally grown Juneberries, chokecherries, rhubarb and raspberries.

“We are kind of proud of utilizing raw products from the area, much of it brought in by people that pick them in the hills,” said Beyer.

A big hit for Pride Dairy and the Dairy Dipper is Juneberry flavored ice cream. The dairy also makes a tasty Juneberry syrup and very popular “cow pies,” chocolate covered Juneberry ice cream on a stick. Such cool treats have helped the Dairy Dipper be recognized nationally as one of the top 50 ice cream parlors in the United States.

“We don’t have the name recognition so we have to make a better product,” said Beyer. “We let our products speak for themselves.”

Judging from very favorable customer comments and a very busy Dairy Dipper ice cream parlor, it is obvious the demand for Pride Dairy’s North Dakota products will continue to grow.

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Information from: Minot Daily News, http://www.minotdailynews.com

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