Food News

J.P. Licks and Castle Island Brewing team up for new ice cream and beer

The two Boston purveyors partnered on salted caramel coffee flavored beer and ice cream.

Castle Island Brewing Co.’s new Crooked Cow Prints with a dollop of J.P. Licks’ new Salted Caramel Infused Coffee ice cream — or, a “Crooked Float.” Courtesy

Boston’s hometown ice cream shop J.P. Licks and South Boston brewery Castle Island Brewing Co. have partnered on a new beer and ice cream flavor. 

J.P. Licks’ new Salted Caramel Infused Coffee ice cream debuted at all locations on Friday, Oct. 28. Castle Island’s Crooked Cow Prints, a salted caramel coffee blonde stout, rolls out at their Norwood and Southie taprooms and at liquor stores across Massachusetts and Rhode Island next week, and will be available throughout November and December.

J.P. Licks’ new flavor is made from their own roasted coffee, blended with caramel and a touch of salt. The ice cream company has roasted its own fair trade beans since 1999 in the Firehouse, the original ice cream shop location at 659 Centre St. in Jamaica Plain. When the Coffee Connection was bought by Starbucks in the ‘90s, J.P. Licks owner Vince Petryk says on J.P. Licks’ website that he “couldn’t buy a good cup of coffee in Boston,” so he started roasting his own.


Unlike the brand’s popular Salted Caramel Cookies ‘n’ Cream flavor, Salted Caramel Infused Coffee doesn’t have cookie crumbles and is, therefore, gluten-free. Salted Caramel Cookies ‘n’ Cream was the brand’s most recent addition to its permanent flavor lineup.

Castle Island’s Crooked Cow Prints, a flavorful light stout, has a “caramel flavor that hits the pallet on the first sip,” said Emily Whitney, senior brand manager at Castle Island. Lactose adds sweetness, and a pinch of salt drives home the salted caramel theme, although the J.P. Licks-roasted Peruvian coffee beans are the “star of the show,” said Whitney.

Castle Island Brewing Co. has taken forays into the funky beer world before —they did a frappe-inspired Porter at one point, says Whitney. As the Castle Island team started talking about innovation for this year, they decided to partner with an ice cream company.

“It was important for us to work with a Massachusetts-based company that we respected, and that we all believe does it right,” she said. “We immediately thought of J.P. Licks.”

From there, the beer’s flavor came naturally, inspired by coffee and lactose — J.P. Licks’ two fortes.


“The imagery and name of the beer really fueled itself from there. We imagined an over-caffeinated cow roaming in its pasture,” said Whitney, and the name Crooked Cow Prints was born.

“To us, ice cream and beer should be fun, and it was about time for us to put the two together,” she said.

The ice cream shop and brewery will host a joint kickoff event at Castle Island’s Southie taproom at 10 Old Colony Ave. on Nov. 3 from 7 to 10 p.m. The ice cream social is open to the public and features karaoke and both the new beer and ice cream separately — or guests can combine them for a “Crooked Float.”

Both new releases are limited-time items, although J.P. Licks and Castle Island both say they won’t deny customers what they really want. 

“Every flavor has the chance of becoming permanent,” said Petryk, depending on customer response. “If it blows every other flavor out of the water, we will keep it around to see if it has staying power,” he said, like they recently did with Salted Caramel Cookies ‘n’ Cream.


“This beer is a limited one-time release,” said Whitney, “but if our fans want some more, we’ve never said no to giving them more as a pilot batch series.”

Moral of the story? Get these flavors while they’re hot (or, in this case, cold), because neither will likely stick around for long.


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