15 Sep 2014
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Patch Instagram photo by montcopatch

Yuengling's Ice Cream is Back!

News that Yuengling's Ice Cream has officially begun production and will hit store shelves next month has been met with 'overwhelming' response, the company said.

Yuengling's Ice Cream is Back! Yuengling's Ice Cream is Back!
Written by Jack Tobias

The package says "Black & Tan." And the name—Yuengling's—is on a slant, from southwest to northeast.

But we're not talking about the famous beer that is the pride of the Coal Region.

We're talking about ice cream. "Black & Tan" is "a swirl of Rich Belgian Chocolate Ice Cream and Salty Caramel Ice Cream." And the name, while on a slant, has an apostrophe "s." The beer's name ends in "g." And some but not all of the beer's labels have the name on a slant.

Although there is indeed a family connection between the beer and the ice cream, it's the ice cream that has been in the news.

That's because Yuengling's Ice Cream is back. It was in business from 1920 to 1985. But after a 29-year interregnum, production has started up at the Tamaqua-area plant of Leiby's Dairy.

The ice cream company has announced that its flavors—"Black & Tan" is one of 10—will hit store shelves next month.

"Hold on to your seats, folks... We've got big news," company president David Yuengling declared on Facebook last week. "Yuengling's Ice Cream officially began production this week! Thank you all for your support. Due to the overwhelming response from fans like you, we bumped the production up from March to January.

"Keep an eye out! We should be hitting store shelves in all Weis and Acme locations in a few short weeks."

Here's what David Yuengling said to Patch via email on Friday, about 24 hours after web and social media postings announced the production start-up (the comments were sent courtesy of Yuengling ice cream's public relations rep, Nicole Lasorda):

"Oh my god! It's been overwhelming," David said. "We've gotten twice the amount of inquiries from stores and customers with this announcement. The consumer demand is what's really making us happy. Everyone's excited and that makes us excited!

"We're still looking at mid- to late-February to hit the shelves at all Acme, Weis and a group of independent grocery stores. Many of those will be in the Lehigh Valley. Customers can follow us on  Facebook and  Twitter for the latest updates on what's happening and the stores we're going to be in."

Yuengling, a second cousin of brewery owner Dick Yuengling,  provides a history lesson on the website and makes the connection with the famous brewery.

"We first began making ice cream back in 1920 when my great-grandfather, Frank Yuengling, started a dairy business during Prohibition to help support the family brewery. Yuengling Dairy Products made incredible ice cream for more than 65 years and brought fond memories to generations of Pennsylvanians."

David's grandfather and father later ran the company. Then came 1985.

"A family tradition comes to an end when the last cartons of Yuengling's Classic Ice Cream are made," the website says. "The Yuengling family makes the difficult decision to stop production and close the plant at 5th and Mahantongo streets [in Pottsville]. The building is donated to St. Patrick's Church in Pottsville."

The website was launched this past September, telling the world that Yuengling's Ice Cream was making a comeback.

"David Yuengling, son of Fredrick G. "Fritz" Yuengling Jr., and [partner] Rob Bohorad proudly re-introduce Yuengling's Ice Cream," the website's timeline says.

"We have taken the utmost care to create a product that we believe you will love and will stand up to my family's tradition of quality and value," David says on the website. "Our product is all natural, starting with local milk and cream that has no added hormones. We produce all of our ice cream in a small dairy in central Pennsylvania and, whenever possible, source our ingredients from local suppliers.

"We hope you will try our ice cream. We believe it is one of the best products you can buy anywhere."

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