Award winning, family friendly, and affordable, the Cold Calf truck has sold ice cream on Anastasia Boulevard for five years. Surrounded by plants and tables, the picturesque little truck sells St. Augustine’s best ice cream. Tim West and Robin Nixon bought Cold Calf over a year ago and have catapulted it into a very successful, and expanding, ice cream business. Using the same homemade, delicious ice cream as the Cold Cow, Tim and Robin have taken their business in a different and exciting direction.
The couple, who always wanted to work in the food industry, broke into the ice cream business by chance: their neighbors were the owners of Cold Cow and Cold Calf. “They introduced us to their ice cream and we just fell in love with it. It is just so much fun and our kids love it…our family thing is ice cream.” The Cold Calf has indeed become a family-run operation. Tim and Robin recently added another child to their family, Leah Grace, their “ice cream baby.”
Tim and Robin currently own two Cold Calf trucks – both serve an impressive selection of handmade ice cream, hard packed frozen yogurt, sugar free ice cream, and flavored ices. Making the most of their extensive flavors, customers can order banana splits, floats, and the very popular fruit chillers (made with their refreshing ices). For baked goods lovers, like me, the couple makes homemade ice cream cakes. You can order a slice, or Tim and Robin will create a custom cake for you to take home for a special celebration, or just for yourself, no judgements.
Calf #1 can always be found about half a mile over The Bridge of Lions on Anastasia Boulevard, parked in the Lee and Cates’ parking lot. It is the perfect location for stopping by on the way to or from the beach. The couple have made this permanent location a very family friendly spot. Starting Friday night and continuing on into the weekend, Calf #1 features a bounce house for children to enjoy and, as Robin says, “jump off their ice cream.” It is a great situation for parents that want to sit and enjoy their treats.
Calf #2 is their mobile operation and can be found around the community at different events. They are often at the St. Augustine Amphitheater for concerts and they also work the Night Owl Movie nights. In the northern part of our county, they can be found at The World Golf Village for events every other Saturday. They even make the drive up to Jacksonville for flag football games with The Grid Iron League. Calf #2 is also available for hire, along with their bounce houses, for private functions.
Between Calf #1’s beach location and Tim and Robin’s commitment to working community events, Cold Calf has developed quite a following among locals. Due to overwhelming local support, Cold Calf has won Best of Saint Augustine for ice cream five years in a row. This year, after Tim and Robin took over, Cold Calf won Best Dessert in The Taste of St. Augustine, beating out some heavy hitters in St. Augustine and national food circles. This achievement is something they are very proud of.
Tim and Robin have ambitious plans for their business. Currently, there is a Calf Bus being finished, from which patrons will be able to order funnel cakes and fried Oreos along with their usual menu. “For the long term, we would like to have a location, a store…because we’ve done so well in St. Augustine, we’d like to branch out to other areas [in Northeast Florida].” Robin envisions an ice cream store where the couple would hold mother-daughter events, father-son football parties, and provide the locals with a fun place to host private parties.
All this success has been built on the 35 flavors of ice cream that the couple features daily on their trucks. I had the opportunity to sample a wide variety of their ices and ice creams at Calf #1. Robin started us with her favorites, which change every week – Birthday, vanilla cake with sprinkles; Cookie Monster, vanilla with cookie dough and cookies and cream; and Calypso Crunch, chocolate with peanut butter filled, chocolate covered pretzels. The favorite among the testers was Cookie Monster. Robin was not surprised; the adults order that flavor more than children. It will turn your mouth blue, but it is worth it.
All the flavors that we tried were delicious. Eyes Wide Open was a stand out for me: a strong coffee ice cream that was not very sweet. I imagine that it would be excellent with hot fudge. Salty Caramel Peanut was an excellent balance of sweet and salty. A great summertime option is the Lemon Ice, very refreshing and not too sweet. Many of their flavors incorporate an abundant amount of mix-ins. According to Robin, Cold Calf likes to create big flavors using as much mix-ins as possible. The Calypso Crunch was so thick with peanut butter and chocolate pretzels that I almost couldn’t get it on my spoon. Almost. I made it work.
This growing, award-winning business is not just successful because of their delicious products, but because of Tim and Robin’s commitment to the community. The portions at Cold Calf are huge and very reasonably priced. The couple wants their customers to leave satisfied and happy. They could justify charging more or cutting down the scoop size, but they are committed to keeping Cold Calf accessible to everyone so that we can come back again and again. Between the truck visiting local events, the family friendly atmosphere, warm costumer service, and future local friendly plans, Cold Calf has created a winning combination that is worth checking out. If you haven’t already, stop by Cold Calf and see why Tim and Robin have rightly won the hearts of the locals.
Writer Cassie Oborne grew up in the beautiful Gulf Coast city of Naples, Florida. She graduated from Flagler College, where she studied English and Secondary Education. After graduation, she and her husband made St. Augustine their permanent home. She has spent the last 16 years exploring and eating her way around the ancient city.