ICE cream never used to be a gourmet dinner’s crowning glory. Yet London has become a capital for the stuff – from street vendors to high gastronomy. Take Michel Roux at Michelin-starred Le Gavroche, who makes all his ice cream fresh daily – this week that includes fresh mint and peanut butter. Or Justin Saunders at City fine dining spot High Timber, whose home made ice cream includes ginger and white chocolate flavours.<br /><br />Frozen treats have been gathering steam for a while now in London. The city has spawned numerous fine gelato shops in the past few years, including Scoop gelateria in Covent Garden and the new Gelato Mio in Holland Park. Snog in South Ken is a fro-yo boutique, as is the brand new Frae on Islington Passage, open till midnight. Then there are the higher brow stop-offs for frozen desserts – Morelli’s fine ices at Harrods, for example – and the classics, such as Marine Ices in Chalk Farm.<br /><br />Michael Di Palma, brand manager of the new Argentine ice cream diner Freggo in Piccadilly, which stays open (and packed) until 2AM, says: “Coffee has been your number one trend over the last decade. But now people are wanting something different. Ice cream is just the thing if you fancy something sweet on your way back to work from lunch or while shopping – a single scoop can really hit the spot.”<br /><br />The Modern Pantry in Farringdon is another top restaurant that makes mind-blowing ice cream that neither child nor adult could resist. Anna Hansen, the owner, says: “The quality of ice cream now available in supermarkets has rocketed. Take a brand like Jude’s – it’s delicious. As good as what you would make yourself. It’s made restaurants up their game.” Jensen says the development of our food culture towards trying new things made from good ingredients has driven the growth of quality ice creams with a twist – The Modern Pantry’s best include sweet corn and ginger, and its hokey pokey honeycomb is to die for.<br /><br />“The UK produces exceptional cream and dairy products,” says Jensen. “The quality of the eggs has improved a hundredfold and they’re not that much more expensive. It makes all the difference.” Amen to that – here are five places to get properly made, delicious and unique ice cream.<br /><br /><strong>HAWSKMOOR, E1 6BJ</strong><br />This excellent Shoreditch diner combines high quality meat and dairy with excellent cocktails and a heavy dose of American gooeyness for dessert. Enter the cherry infused gin with vanilla ice cream – a match made in heaven.<br /><br /><strong>BOB BOB RICARD, W1F 9DE</strong><br />BBR is an odd mixture of comfort and high glamour – Bovril on the one hand and champagne buttons on the other. The food is patchy but well-intentioned – until come to the salted caramel ice cream made on sight with so much love it oozes from the bowl. It’s transcendent stuff and shows Britain’s cows in the most glowing light imaginable.<br /><br /><strong>ST JOHN, EC1M 4AY</strong><br />It goes without saying the everything at Fergus Henderson’s flagship is the best of British, from the Old Spot pork to the brill to the Eccles cakes. All that is creamy and meaty is of superior quality but it’s the lemon sorbet and Russian vodka that will leave you speechless – and far from overfull.<br /><br /><strong>PARADISE BY WAY OF KENSAL GREEN, W10 4AE</strong><br />Paradise is at the vanguard of London’s ever more exciting gastropub scene. The menu is chock full of regionally-labelled goodies, from Vale of Evesham asparagus to Poole harbour oysters. Desserts are in the same vein and very ice cream heavy, with lovely pistachio and yogurt – as well as knickerbocker glory and green apple sorbet.<br /><br /><strong>ROSSOPOMODORO, WC2H 9EP</strong><br />Italy’s biggest pizza chain has three outlets in London, all serving good Neapolitan fare. The ice cream here is a stand-out and reflects the chain’s devotion to home-made, fresh food. It’s made on site and flavours include seasonal Buffalo milk – heavenly. This week it’s almond.