The Screamery, the Tucson-born ice cream shop that specializes in natural, handcrafted ice cream starting with pasteurizing its own cream base, is opening its fourth and final Tucson area location, this one in Marana.
Kenny and Linda Sarnoski will open the Marana shop on May 1 in the small plaza at 5920 W. Arizona Pavilions Drive, off Cortaro Road and Interstate 10. It will be the only ice cream shop in the bustling Cortaro Road-I-10 corridor populated by several chain restaurants and large retail stores including Walmart and the weeks-old TJ Maxx/Ross Dress for Less retail complex.
“We’re making a lot of new friends and lot of happy faces,” Kenny Sarnoski said. “And we’re excited about that.”
Meanwhile, Sarnoski said his small Tucson company will make inroads into the Phoenix market before the end of the year. They are negotiating for a location in Gilbert, the first of at least eight Phoenix area shops. All will be corporate owned and operated, with a focus on the couple’s popular ice cream that comes in inventive flavors like Bees Knees — honey-swirled in a sweet cream and lavender base — and Rough At Sea — a sea salt-kissed base to complement honey-swirled candied pecans, almonds and pistachios.
He said they also have had people outside Arizona, including in Florida and Las Vegas, who have expressed interest in franchising.
“We want to be as big as Ben & Jerry’s,” Kenny Sarnoski said.
In addition to cones and cups ($2.75 for a kid’s scoop, $4.50 for a single), the Screamery offers a variety of treats from “Ice cream Nachos,” with a single scoop of ice cream topping waffle chips drizzled with hot fudge; ice cream floats and sundaes; and the meant-to-be-shared Farmhouse with a whopping eight scoops of ice cream loaded with cookies, brownies and buttercake and your choice of toppings. At $24.50, it’s the most expensive item on the menu.
“To have ice cream where it’s a $4.50 for a scoop of ice cream ... they’re walking out spending $10 for two people,” Sarnoski said. “In order to do that in Tucson, you have to have a great product and great customer service. The customer service has to be as good as the product.”
The Screamery is the latest Tucson company to take on the Phoenix market. The Flores family launched its Sir Veza’s Taco Garage brand at Sky Harbor International Airport in 2012. It branched out to US Airways Center — now Talking Stick Resort Arena — in 2013 and Chandler the following year. El Guero Canelo Mexican Restaurant, which specializes in Sonoran hot dogs, opened last year in west Phoenix.
The Sarnoski’s opened their first Screamery in summer 2014 at 50 S. Houghton Road. In spring 2016, it opened the second shop at 2545 E. Speedway, followed a few months later with the downtown shop at 250 E. Congress last summer.