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Norwalk Daily Voice serves Norwalk & Rowayton

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Grab a Salty Turtle at Sweet Ashley's in Norwalk

NORWALK, Conn. — The people have spoken and Catherine Mulvehill’s “Salty Turtle” is the clear winner of the create-a-flavor ice cream contest at Sweet Ashley’s in Norwalk. Customers devoured more than twice the amount of the winning flavor than that of its nearest competitor.

“It’s based on my favorite type of candy. This is as close as you can get to having that and ice cream at the same time,” says Mulvehill. She and her family have been patrons at Sweet Ashley’s since the store opened nearly 20 years ago.

Mulvehill’s concoction blends caramel, chocolate, vanilla ice cream and salty roasted pecans. The customers seemed to approve — more than eight tubs were sold through August. Three flavors were in the competition, with the nearest competition selling four tubs.

The competition was the brainchild of Bunny Mostad and Deb Alderson with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage . Last year, the two agents sent coupons for a free cone at Sweet Ashley’s. This year, they wanted to up the ante. “We really wanted to do something fun with a lot of community involvement,” says Alderson.

The rules were simple: create a flavor, the ice cream shop staff picked their favorite three submissions and then the flavor with the most sales through August won. The prize included shirts, a tote, a plaque and gift certificates for free quarts of ice cream. All of the contestants also won the chance for a little ice cream immortality.

“We’ll feature another flavor each month from the runners-up,” says owner Stephen Tyminski. All of the flavors in Sweet Ashley’s cases are handcrafted and made in the shop. It takes about two days to make each large tub of frozen delight. Sweet Ashley’s goes through up to 90 tubs a week.

Tyminski had no idea who the contestants were at the beginning of the contest. He was given only the flavor names and proposed recipes. Alderson and Mostad kept the identities secret so no one could play favorites. Some customers gave themselves away, but only after Tyminski’s crew selected their three favorites to go head to head for August sales out of 85 entries.

“We all win,” says Tyminski. “They get prizes and we get all these new flavors.”

If you could craft your perfect ice cream flavor, what would it be?

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