Local Heroes Food Artisan: Jen & Andy Satinsky Weckerly’s Ice Cream
Weckerly’s is known for whimsical ice-cream sandwiches that stack flavors like chocolate marbled with blue cheese and candied walnuts between shortbread cookies. Fleeting ice-cream flavors like lemongrass sour cherry and honey plum are made in small quantities with peak-of-the-season produce.
Weckerly’s started in the kitchen at Green Line Café in West Philly in 2012. The pints and sandwiches quickly drew a following and spread to markets, cafes and events around the city. Two years later, owners Jen and Andy Satinsky moved their operation to Northeast Philly and built a micro-creamery at Global Dye Works, a hub for local artists and makers.
Jen, a Pittsburgh native, developed her love of making ice cream— and her appreciation for local sourcing—during her time as pastry chef at White Dog Café. She heads up the kitchen at Weckerly’s while Andy manages sales and distribution, but it’s a passion project for them both. Using traditional French techniques and ingredients from the best of our region’s dairies, farms and artisans, they’re making ice cream that’s unmatched when it comes to local flavor.
Under all the fun and fancy flavors, Weckerly’s ice cream tastes like old-timey farmstand richness. Weckerley’s is one of the few icecream makers in Philly that make their own ice-cream base rather than purchasing one from a distributor or dairy (to which thickeners like carrageenan gum have likely been added). This allows them to source the highest-quality raw milk and cream.
“We purchase directly because of the fulfillment and bond we’re building with the farmers,” Andy says. “It forces us to pay more attention and put more time into making a good product.”
How’s this for a local loop? On delivery day, Weckerly’s packs up the van with coolers and a portable freezer loaded with orders for Chester County stores like Kimberton Whole Foods and Wyebrook Farm. Jen’s brother—the delivery guy—heaves in five-gallon buckets of waste egg whites. At Wyebrook, he restocks the freezer with ice cream and leaves the egg whites for the pigs. He drops off the Kimberton Whole Foods order, then picks up cream just down the road at Seven Stars Creamery (known for their exceptional yogurt) and raw milk from Camphill Village Kimberton Hills.
“We’ve had an amazing opportunity to build a food business around something that Jen does so well, that gives us relationships,” Andy says. “We get to collaborate with likeminded folks,” Jen adds. Weckerly’s had a big year in 2016. The Satinskys opened their first retail location, which frees them up to do even more smallbatch experimentation. They may start working on a line of frozen yogurt, but not as a “low calorie” alternative, they emphasize: “It’s just another great way to make more delicious dairy products with local ingredients.”
Weckerly’s Ice Cream
9 W. Girard Ave.