Clemson’s Best Ice Cream Announces Carolina Almond Coffee Flavor

When one cup of joe is not enough, grab a bowl!

Right now, the natural question is where to find a pint of the finest coffee-flavored ice cream you can imagine. The answer is blowing in the wind but not for long. Carolina Almond Coffee the fifth flavor of Clemson’s Best, is gradually making its way into stores. If you find it, scoop it up. If you can’t, ask for it by name or take a request form to your local grocer: https://clemsonsbest.com/ice-cream-finder/.

The new flavor debuted quietly in September, and fans who got the first taste were enthusiastic. Reviews are so favorable, in fact, that Carolina Almond Coffee is outpacing in some stores Caramel Butter Pecan, clearly the crowd favorite since April 2018, when Clemson University announced plans to trademark for retail its new ice cream brand.

Walt Deptula, a sports talk radio personality for WCCP The Roar, was one of the first to try Carolina Almond Coffee in late August when brand officials received final samples of the new flavor from the manufacturer. He loves coffee ice cream his producer gives him a new brand to try every Christmas season. He tried this one on air. “As God as my witness, I have just tasted Carolina Almond Coffee for the first time,” he raved. “This is my new favorite. It’s fight-your-neighbor-for-it kind of good. It’s freaking outstanding.”

Some Upstate Bi-Lo stores featured the new flavor in demos the day Deptula sung its praises tried during his weekday “Road Rage” show. No one turned up their noses at the grocery store debut, even those who said they don’t usually do coffee-flavored ice cream — possibly because the fudge content is just right in this one, confirming the University’s decision to develop a chocolate recipe for Flavor Six. Those demos did it for Bi-Lo, which carries Carolina Almond Coffee and the other four flavors at its Seneca, Pendleton and Anderson stores.

Ingles, the one major grocery store chain that sells Clemson’s Best in most of its locations, has yet to stock the newest flavor, although it was developed at the suggestion of its own VP for frozen foods. Scott Pigeon, the university representative who oversees Clemson’s Best, hopes to have it in the freezers at Ingles soon. And talk around the office coffee pot is that at least one other supermarket with major presence in the Southeast is seriously eyeing Clemson’s Best. Many private-label retailers have embraced it, however, and news of the new product gradually is spreading.

Select scoop shops and restaurants in South Carolina serve Carolina Almond Coffee, too, now that Sysco Foods, a major food distributor, has named Clemson’s Best Ice Cream its premium brand in certain regions.

Grocery store managers can decide for themselves what locally made products are sold at individual locations, whether that’s Bi-Lo, Publix, Food Lion or Fresh Market, Pigeon said. “Sometimes it just takes consumer demand.”

To find a find a retailer near you, visit https://clemsonsbest.com/ice-cream-finder/. Click the link for a form you can use to persuade local store managers to order some really good stuff.

Carolina Almond Coffee, like each of the Clemson’s Best flavors, is a super-premium ice cream, meaning that it’s made with 16 percent butterfat. That’s a lot if you don’t know much about ice cream, and it’s more than many national brands. It’s also made with milk from South Carolina cows and with grounds from 100 percent Arabica beans roasted by Stone Roastery, a family-owned coffee shop in North Augusta, S.C. Chocolate-covered almonds, a decadent fudge ripple and espresso flavoring round out the major ingredients that account for 1,080 calories in a one-pint container.

Taste is not the only reason fans are loyal to the Clemson brand, however. Sure, the iconic paw carries weight, but there’s a much bigger story at play. For every pint of ice cream sold, the university gives 10 percent of its profits to the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences. Brand officials announced last month that $19,000 has been paid forward since last April. Money goes to the CAFLS Advantage program, which promotes learning beyond the classroom. Opportunities include undergraduate research, on-the-job training and participation in summer camps. Students also can enroll in study-at-home programs and travel abroad.

Highlighting South Carolina family farms is equally important to the Clemson’s Best brand, Pigeon said. Four South Carolina farmers contribute the milk, fruits and nuts found in Homemade Vanilla, Strawberry Shortcake, Caramel Butter Pecan and Peaches –N-Cream and, now, Carolina Almond Coffee. Farm families involved are Hickory Hill in Edgefield; McLeod Farms in McBee; and Titan Farms, and Yon Family Farms, both in Ridge Spring.

Fifth Flavor out Soon; Guess Correctly to Win

To celebrate our first birthday, CLEMSON’S BEST™ is churning up a new flavor and we want you to participate in our party. Correctly guess our fifth flavor for a chance to win something good. What that is, we aren’t quite sure, but we bet it will make you happy — just like our ice cream has done since the 2018 Spring Game Weekend, when baseball fans were the first to taste CLEMSON’S BEST™ at its grand slam debut.

Our ice cream is a Certified SC product made with ingredients grown or produced by former students. Part of our mission is paying it forward and continuing rural America’s farming legacy. From Day One we pledged 10 percent of our sales to the university’s College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences. So far, you’ve helped donate more than $13,000 to the CAFLS Advantage program, which promotes learning beyond the classroom.

Opportunities include undergraduate research, on-the-job training and participation in summer camps. Students also can enroll in study-at-home programs — mostly during spring break — that expose them to South Carolina business experiences in food processing, packaging, agribusiness and natural resources. There’s also a study-abroad component that allows students to learn farm practices in Australia, animal science in Germany and France, and crop diversity in Sri Lanka, an independent island nation near south Asia, where large numbers of the population are hungry and malnourished.

To keep up that good work, and enjoy yourself while doing it, look for pints of CLEMSON’S BEST™ at more than 100 Ingles locations across South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee. Numerous farm-to-market businesses also sell CLEMSON’S BEST™, even when most major retailers have given us the snub.

Bi-Lo, Food Lion, Kroger and Publix have said no, but we are determined to spread the yum to as many customers as possible. To be fair, trucking issues and cold storage present challenges for some of the larger chains. But the more people demand our product, the better our chances of landing a second retailer. If not, there’s always Ingles that signed with us without even tasting our ice cream and the dozens of mom-and-pop stores that followed. In addition, Sysco Foods Columbia (South Carolina) recently made CLEMSON’S BEST™ its premium ice cream brand, exposing us to restaurants and small businesses our current delivery system does not service.

To the coastal residents who continue to support us, even though we haven’t reached you yet, continue to hold on. We’re still working on that challenge

Ice Cream Sales Benefit College Students

Contributions from sales of the specialty ice cream named for Clemson University have exceeded $12,000 for the school’s College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences, brand officials announced today.

Clemson’s Best Gourmet Ice Cream™ exists in large part to support South Carolina’s agrarian heritage, said project manager Scott Pigeon, of Clemson University. “Every time you purchase a pint of ice cream, we provide opportunities to college students passionate about agriculture,” he said. To date, Clemson’s Best™ ice cream purchases have contributed $13,100 to CAFLS.

Ice cream money donated to the university goes to the CAFLS Advantage program, which promotes learning beyond the classroom. Opportunities include undergraduate research, on-the-job training and participation in summer camps. Students also can enroll in study-at-home programs — mostly during spring break — that expose them to South Carolina business experiences in food processing, packaging, agribusiness and natural resources. There’s also a study-abroad component that allows students to learn farm practices in Australia, animal science in Germany and France, and crop diversity in Sri Lanka, an independent island nation near south Asia, where large numbers of the population are hungry and malnourished.

CAFLS students have benefited from ice cream sales since April 2018, when Clemson’s Best™ first debuted. Highlighting family farms is equally important, Pigeon said. Four South Carolina farmers contribute the milk, fruits and nuts found in Homemade Vanilla, Strawberry Shortcake, Caramel Butter Pecan and Peaches –N-Cream. Sources close to the brand — a Certified SC product — have hinted at the summer release of a fifth flavor.

Farm families involved are Hickory Hill Farm in Edgefield; McLeod Farms in McBee; and Titan Farms, and Yon Family Farms, both in Ridge Spring.

Clemson’s Best™ is considered a super-premium ice cream, meaning that it’s made with 16 percent butterfat — more than most national brands.

Clemson’s Best™ Named Title Sponsor of Spring Game Weekend 2018

Representatives of CLEMSON’S BEST™ ice cream are literally screaming with enthusiasm after announcing that the university’s latest dairy product is the title sponsor of Spring Weekend.

Baseball fans will be the first to taste CLEMSON’S BEST™ when the Tigers battle the Hurricanes on Friday, which starts three days of sports mania and solid orange April 13-15.

Officials hope fans will scream, too — for a Clemson victory and for the ice cream. Participants can sample free cups of Tiger Orange Vanilla, the flavor that officially will be sold at Doug Kingsmore Stadium, Clemson Memorial Stadium and Littlejohn Coliseum. Look for ice cream samples at all three baseball games played Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Brand officials on Saturday also will hand out CLEMSON’S BEST™ at Be A T.I.G.E.R. Field Day on the Littlejohn lawn and inside Clemson Memorial Stadium during the Spring Game.

Follow the ice cream signs, look for the bright orange tents and listen for sampling locations broadcast on PA systems during the games. And don’t forget to scream for CLEMSON’S BEST™ ice cream, the favorite ice cream of the Clemson Tigers.

Clemson’s BEST™ is a Certified SC product and made with ingredients grown by CU grads. Ten percent of the ice cream proceeds support the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences. Look for pints of CLEMSON’S BEST™ at 107 Ingles locations across South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee.

4/11/18: Clemson’s Best™ Debuts to Tiger Fans
3/15/18: Clemson Spring Weekend Features Multitude of Athletic Events

Tiger Orange Vanilla Sold At Home Sports Events

It’s official. Tiger Orange Vanilla is the CLEMSON’S BEST™ flavor that will be sold at Doug Kingsmore Stadium, Clemson Memorial Stadium and Littlejohn Coliseum. Fans will find it in 6-ounce cups and flavored in vanilla with a Clemson orange tint.

The signature treat will make its university debut at Clemson Spring Weekend April 13-15, when 15,000 cups and 2-ounce tasting samples will be given away at all three baseball games played Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Brand officials on Saturday also will hand out CLEMSON’S BEST™ at Be A T.I.G.E.R. Field Day on the Littlejohn lawn and inside Clemson Memorial Stadium during the Spring Game.

Tiger Orange Vanilla will be sold as a concession item at the baseball game against Kennesaw State on April 24, and at every home game thereafter. Other pint-size flavors can be found at 107 Ingles Markets across The Carolinas. Negotiations also are underway with Food Lion and Harris Teeter. Flavors available for purchase off-campus at Ingles are vanilla, peaches and cream, strawberry shortcake and butter pecan.

Clemson’s BEST™ is a Certified SC product made with ingredients grown by CU graduates. A portion of each purchase will help support the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences. Family farms in South Carolina produce the main ingredients. Cream comes from an Edgefield dairy; strawberries from a fifth-generation farm in McBee, pecans from a Ridge Spring family-run orchard, and peaches from another Ridge Spring farmer, who produces half of the state’s peach crop.

Major AG Leaders Endorse Clemson’s Best™

Two of South Carolina’s most prominent agriculture leaders today endorsed CLEMSON’S BEST™ ice cream.

State Agriculture Commissioner Hugh Weathers and Harry Ott, South Carolina Farm Bureau president, separately conveyed their support in letters to the head of Clemson’s finance and operations department, which is coordinating the university’s latest branded dairy venture.

“CLEMSON’S BEST™ ice cream connects connoisseurs directly to the farmers who grow [the main] ingredients,” Ott wrote in a letter to vice president Brett Dalton. “In keeping with the tradition of land-grant institutions, this partnership is a nod to Clemson’s agricultural roots.”

The 100,000-member organization Ott heads supports family farms and locally grown food and fiber. Its government relations division executes policies and acts as a watchdog of sorts for farm families, safe agriculture practices and rural lands — not unlike Clemson. And its latest dairy product reflects the university through and through.

The milk, fruits and nuts found in CLEMSON’S BEST™ gourmet flavors — Strawberry Shortcake, Peaches and Cream, Pecan Candy (butter pecan), and traditional vanilla — are grown in South Carolina by farmers educated at Clemson. The cream comes from cows at Hickory Hill Farms in Edgefield. Peaches are grown at Titan Farms in Ridge Spring and pecans are shipped from the Nut House, also in Ridge Spring. Strawberries are grown by McLeod Farms in McBee.

CLEMSON’S BEST ™ also has earned the Department of Agriculture’s Certified SC seal, and 10 percent of the proceeds directly benefit the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences. Pay-it-forward initiatives include internships, scholarships, and campus programs and activities.

“Production, processing, packaging, transportation, marketing and merchandising of CLEMSON’S BEST™ offers hand-on experimental learning for students in a variety of majors,” Weathers wrote. “Real-world internships and cooperative work experiences make students more employable. CLEMSON’S BEST is something to which everyone in South Carolina can raise a spoon.”

As Titan Farms owner Chalmers Carr reminded university brass in a third endorsement letter, the through-and-through concept is not a new approach for Clemson. In fact, the collaboration between farmers and their alma mater emphasizes the university’s deep roots. As a land-grant institution, it was established to give the middle class and working people access to government-funded education centered on agriculture and practical engineering. The concept encouraged long-lasting and close ties between graduates and their alma mater.

“At the very heart of the university is fulfilling the mission charged by the will of Thomas Green Clemson,” Carr wrote, citing the benefactor who left his antebellum home and wealth, including 814 acres, to the state for an agricultural college. “It was his desire to provide academic opportunities for South Carolinians, to lead research initiatives and to promote economic endeavors in this state. The CLEMSON’S BEST™ ice cream project fulfills each of those missions.”

Clemson’s legacy had once belonged to Vice President John C. Calhoun, whose daughter married Green, an engineer, musician and artist. Bibliographers have written that Clemson wanted to start an agricultural college because he felt government officials did not appreciate the importance of agricultural education. Clemson Agricultural College opened in July 1893 with 446 students. They were the first class to learn the college’s concept of paying forward and giving back.

“I speak for all the farm families involved in CLEMSON’S BEST™ when I say we get great satisfaction from putting a smile on the faces of those who enjoy food grown from our orchards, fields and farms,” Yon Family Farms owner Lydia Yon wrote in a letter to university VP Dalton. Pecans from her family’s orchards are used in CLEMSON’S BEST™ butter pecan-flavored ice cream.

“The story of this locally grown product is a testament that the education and training we received at CU is being put to good use,” she said.