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Mexican Street Fare Meets Gourmet Ice Cream on Hot Avondale Block

 Delicias Natural ice cream shop is one of Avondale's newest additions.
Delicias Natural
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AVONDALE — A new spot in Avondale is combining Mexican food cart fare with an elaborate — and natural — ice cream selection.

Delicias Natural, at 2867 N. Milwaukee Ave., offers mainstay cart treats like elotes and chicharonnes and also boasts 36 flavors of natural ice cream loaded with fresh fruits, plus an array of other snacks, including nachos and tortas.

Among those 36 flavors are some not-so-common ones, like guanabana, rose petal and avocado. In nearly all the flavors, thick chunks of fruit can be seen melding with ice cream that Yelpers describe as creamy and not too sweet.

"All the ice cream that we do is natural," said owner Jesus Saavedra. "Like the strawberry ice cream has real strawberries in it. The mango has real mangos."

They don't make the ice cream in house, though. Instead they get it from another vendor in Pilsen, Las Tarascas.

Saavedra said the Mexican-style ice cream parlors (neverías) have been popping up across the city as appreciation for the Latin American take on the treat grows.

"They've been opening all over Chicago, so I wanted to try it," the 43-year-old Logan Square resident said. "It was actually my ex-girlfriend's idea. We went around trying everything [at different ice cream shops] and then decided to do this."

Don't worry, it wasn't the stress of opening a new shop that did the relationship in. Saavedra — who also owns a wireless store — said it just wasn't meant to be.

Besides, he'll have all the ice cream he needs to get through the healing process.

Delicias Natural also carries 41 flavors of paletas, a Latin-American ice pop made with real fruit, as well as chocolate-covered bananas and strawberries, fruit-infused yogurt drinks, malts and good old-fashioned strawberries and cream.

Since opening earlier this summer, business has been "OK," though the shop has been well-received on Yelp, Saavedra said.

It opened on a block that's seen some new activity lately. La Farine, a bakery and coffee shop,  opened earlier this summer just up the street, while Logan Square pizzeria Dante's soon will open a second location about a block south.

As to whether he thinks some of the storefronts around him will continue to fill with new shops, Saavedra said, "hopefully."