Five icy treats to hang on to summer in KC

The lemon granita at Marco Polo.

The lemon granita at Marco Polo’s.

Baseball is competing with football on the television and the kids are headed back to school, so summer is about to pack up its picnic basket. But it is still warm out and the ice creams vans continue to slowly jangle their way through the neighborhood.

With that in mind, The Recommended Daily wanted to give you a way to say a proper goodbye to the season. So here are five ice treats to help you hang on to summer in Kansas City a little longer.

Lemon Granita — Marco Polo’s Italian Market (1201 W 103rd Street). Marco Polo’s will celebrate its 30th anniversary Wednesday with $1.95 sausages (from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.). That’s when they’ll also officially introduce Lemon Granita — the frozen dessert made with lemons and sugar that chef Jasper J. Mirabile Jr. has based on his grandfather Cropis’ 100-year-old recipe from Sicily. The granita is slightly tart and sweet, as if you froze the lemonade you’d make for a summer picnic.

Italian Ice — Hi Hat Coffee (5012 State Line, Westwood Hills, Kansas). If an Italian soda met a slushie machine, you’d end up with an offspring that looked like Italian Ice. It’s all crushed ice in beautiful pastels (courtesy of the syrup for Italian soda). More coconut raspberry than you expect goes out the door.

Frozen Margarita — Zocalo Mexican Cuisine & Tequileria (620 W 48th Street). Finding fresh fruit in a margarita can be like looking for the vegetarian option in a barbecue restaurant. But Zocalo uses white peach puree for its Peach Flower made with St. Germain Elderflower liqueur and prickly pear puree paired with Domaine de Canton Ginger liqueur in the Prickly Ginger. The frozen lime margarita is $4.50 during happy hour between 3 and 7 p.m. weekdays.

Paletas — Paleteria Tropicana (830 Southwest Boulevard). These popsicles can bring the sweet and heat. There’s mango with chile (or cucumber with chile), as well as cream-based pops to cool your mouth down. If you see green pick it up, avocado is a keeper.

Smoothies — Marketplace Justice (12915 7th Street, Grandview). The two-year-old shop in Grandview is a cafe, health food kiosk and home decor store. It’s also a haven for those on a paleo, raw, or vegan diet. The smoothies (now available in a smaller, 16 oz. size) are served in Mason jars and they reflect the seasons (cucumbers are big now). They’ve also got a set of standards like the Bohemian — organic bananas, strawberry, granola and organic milk. [A tip: For those on gluten-free diets, they have a gluten-free pancake breakfast Saturday mornings from 9 a.m. to noon].

Jonathan Bender

Jonathan Bender is the founder of The Recommended Daily.

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