Here's the scoop: Gifford's to reopen store
Silver Spring ice cream company also strikes distribution deals
Just in time for spring, Gifford's of Silver Spring has some tasty news for ice cream lovers in the region.
Neal Lieberman, CEO of Gifford's Wholesale Ice Cream, said he'll reopen his ice cream store in Chevy Chase early next month. He also has reached an agreement to place Gifford's ice cream in the area's three Balducci supermarkets and says The Burger Joint restaurants will soon start offering Gifford's milkshakes.
"We are excited to get at least one of the Gifford's scoop shops reopened so that Washingtonians can once again get their favorite local ice cream," Lieberman said in an email to The Gazette. Lieberman had sold off the company's ice cream stores, including those in Bethesda and Rockville, to concentrate on wholesale operations.
Lieberman said he is pleased to provide some good news for Gifford's customers, while acknowledging that he is still in the midst of litigation against the investor who bought the ice cream stores, which Lieberman says are now all closed.
"Yes, litigation is ongoing," Lieberman said, "although thankfully we only sold him the existing stores (at the time) so we still have the retail rights to open additional Gifford's locations."
The Chevy Chase store will be managed by confectionary company Artfully Chocolate Kingsbury Confections of Washington, D.C., which has shops in Washington and Alexandria, Va.
"We produced chocolates for Neal for his stores," said Artfully Chocolate co-owner Robert Kingsbury. "We offer over 16 different designer hot chocolates and other things in our D.C. and Virginia stores. ... The Chevy Chase store will focus on ice cream and hot chocolate."
David Smith, president of Chevy Chase Land Co., which is leasing the space to Lieberman, said the Chevy Chase store had been closed about six months.
"When Neal had it before, it was doing extremely well," Smith said. "So we are excited to see it reopening."
Balducci's will carry Gifford's ice cream in its supermarkets in Bethesda, Alexandria and McLean, Va., plus Balducci's & Kings supermarkets in New York and Connecticut, for a total of 34 stores, Lieberman said.
He said The Burger Joint locations in Bethesda and Washington, plus new ones opening in Cabin John, Columbia and several other states, will sell Gifford's ice cream.
"Additionally, we have partnered with a number of great area operators who are scooping Gifford's ice cream," Lieberman said, "including Something Sweet in Cleveland Park, Jetties in Georgetown and Broadbranch Market in Chevy Chase."