Cornell Dairy Bar

Photo by Robyn Wishna

Cornell Dairy Bar

Providing fresh and local diary products to the Cornell and Ithaca community

By Annemarie Morse

You shouldn’t pay a visit to Cornell without stopping at the Cornell Dairy Bar. It’s a social institution—in fact, eating ice cream at the Dairy Bar is number 11 on the list of 161 things every Cornellian should do before they graduate. But you don’t need this kind of challenge to enjoy their delicious ice cream.

The ice cream is made in a new, state of the art dairy plant in Stocking Hall. It’s made from the milk of Cornell cows living just down the road, all part of the research and teaching mission of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS). You can’t get much more fresh and local than that!

There are 20 ice cream flavors, some of which were designed by Cornell undergraduate students. An introductory food science course splits students into groups to develop innovative ice cream flavors. In 2015, to celebrate Cornell’s sesquicentennial, the winning team created Sweet Cornell, a light, sweet corn-flavored ice cream with a hint of salted caramel. It was inspired by the charm of swaying corn growing on an upstate farm. Other flavors include Dean’s Berry Swirl, Clocktower Pumpkin, and, my personal favorite, Triple Play Chocolate.

cow pic - by Annemarie MorseNo visit to the Dairy Bar is complete without visiting Cornelia the cow, a statue currently located in the lobby of Stocking Hall. Her son Cal is sometimes also in the area, but both are known to move around, disappearing only to reappear without explanation, months or years later. Cornelia visited Los Angeles with President Skorton in 2011 and was part of the Got Milk? Mustache campaign with CALS Dean Kathryn Boor.

The Dairy Bar has been around since 1949 but closed in 2010 as part of the renovations of Stocking Hall, reopening in 2013. In 2014, a new cheese press arrived at the pilot plant to boost production of the beloved Big Red Cheddar. There are wedges and wheels available that are aged from 3 months to a year.

The Cornell Dairy also produces delicious yogurt, milk, chocolate milk and Big Red Refuel. This beverage was created in a collaboration of Cornell athletics and the dairy plant to address the noted issue of athletes under-fueling their bodies. This high protein, low fat alternative to energy drinks assists in athletic post-workout recovery plans.

Make the Cornell Dairy Bar a destination! It’s located on the Cornell campus on the corner of Tower and Judd Falls Road. There’s even free parking on evenings and weekends just across the street. You won’t be disappointed!

Annemarie Morse is a certified wine judge and chair of the Finger Lakes Chapter of the American Wine Society. She holds an MPS in Enology from Cornell University and is an international wine judge, wine and food writer, consultant, and educator.

Top photo by Robyn Wishna, right photo by Annemarie Morse

This piece is from our dairy-focused Fall 2015 issue, out soon!

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