One of the things that’s always surprised and disappointed me about Sweden is the rather limited selection of really good ice cream in grocery stores. One would think that the “land of 9 different grades of cream” could make decent ice cream, and I have Swedish friends who swear it exists, but it’s not stocked in my grocer’s freezer and therefore doesn’t really address my complaint.
If I want to buy premium ice cream at the grocery store I have to get Ben & Jerry’s or Häagen-Dazs, both of which are hideously expensive here, usually between 45 and 49 SEK ($7.45 to $8.10) per half-liter. YES, you read that right. Consequently, we don’t buy ice cream very often.
And then about two weeks ago, while picking up a few things we needed for dinner one weeknight, I found the Häagen-Dazs on sale for 30 SEK each. Not only that, but they had two flavours available that I’d never seen them stock before (Cookies & Cream and Vanilla Caramel Brownie). Needless to say, I HAD to get a carton of each, and even Dr. Darling marveled at the bargain.
Much to our surprise, the Häagen-Dazs was still on sale when we did our usually grocery run at the weekend, and there was yet another flavour not usually in stock: Strawberry Cheesecake. We grabbed that one for the Swede and a carton of my favorite, Pralines & Cream. And then when I was there to pick up a package from the postal kiosk a few days later…the price STILL hadn’t changed, so I grabbed two more…including a new flavour, Chocolate, Pralines & Caramel. (Awesome.)
Clearly it was impossible for me to resist the power of Häagen-Dazs at one-third off the regular price, but surely the sale was about to end at any moment, right?
So yesterday I had to swing by the store to pick up a couple of items for our first picnic of the year, and not only was the ice cream still on sale, there was an in-store coupon that rewarded you with progressively more savings for every carton purchased. I got two more.
Now we’re running out of room for anything else in our freezer, so when Dr. Darling and I went on our usual weekly grocery run this morning, I vowed that I would not buy any more Häagen-Dazs. But as we passed the display the Swede, who was just sure that I had been allowed to use it erroneously the day before since it had the usual “cannot be combined with any other offer” disclaimer printed on it, decided to take a closer look at the in-store coupon.
Shazz: I don’t think I cheated. Why would they hang the coupons in the freezer WITH the ice cream if customers weren’t allowed to use one at the time of purchase?
Dr. D: Good point. Still, between the sale and the coupon, they’re practically giving it away.
Shazz: I’ve been getting some every time I’m in this store…we can’t buy meat because the freezer is so full.
Dr. D: You do realize that if we get three, the coupon value jumps to 30 SEK, making the 3rd carton free?
Looks like we’re in for the first-ever Vegetarian Week at The Penthouse-Nordic.