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Sweet Cooie’s brings back the feelings of classic 1920s ice cream parlors

Flashback to February 1922: Ice cream and soda parlors are all the rage in Chicago. Kids from each and every neighborhood in the windy city run to the nearest confectionery with just enough change rattling in their pockets for a red gumball or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The staff wears bowties as they scoop homemade ice cream from cardboard containers. Children’s eyes glisten as they watch their cone swirl in a dish of jimmies, coating each side with rainbow sprinkles.

Fast forward to February 2017: Sweet Cooie’s opens its doors to a mint and marble room that is reminiscent of the same 1920s ice cream parlor, but this time in Denver’s Congress Park neighborhood.

Owner Paul Tamburello found his inspiration for Sweet Cooie’s from his mother who was at one time a child in Chicago buying ice cream from the corner store. At the age of 23, Tamburello’s mother moved from Chicago to Colorado after the beauty of the state captured her heart during a family vacation. She considered it her first great adventure.

Tamburello also owns Little Man Ice Cream — his first great adventure. Named after his father whose nickname was “Little Man,” it only seemed fitting to name his second ice cream store after his mother whose nickname was “Cooie.” Tamburello’s mother helped to design the store before passing away last April at the age of 91.

“Sweet Cooie’s is a happy place,” says General Manager Melissa Pulsinelli.

Pulsinelli started working at Sweet Cooie’s shortly after her two daughters started working for Little Man and loved the experience.

“Sweet Cooie’s is a place that brings the kids out of adults,” says Pulsinelli. “You know the kids are having fun, but it’s when the eyes of adults light up over a cotton candy cone that makes your day.”

All ice cream is made in the Highlands in Little Man’s kitchen then transported to Sweet Cooie’s. Certain flavors are unique to Sweet Cooie’s alone, including the mint caramel julep. Vegan ice cream and sorbets are also offered along with homemade truffles and the “Gooey Cooie” — an ice cream sandwich made with a freshly baked pastry.

Treat yourself to a scoop (or two) at 3506 E. 12th Ave in Denver.