The Banana
Split Book

A Month of

More Than
A Month
Of Sundaes

120th Anniversary of the
Ice Cream Sundae

Celebrate the 120th anniversary of the Great American Ice Cream Sundae with a special edition of "Ice Cream Sundae: 100 Greatest Fountain Formulas," the definitive listing of 100 versions of the classic dessert, from humble, forgotten relics to dishes that have become popular standards, arranged in alphabetical order and instantly accessible.  It's more than just a collection of recipes.  On every page there is a scoop of history, a measure of technique, and a sprinkle of trivia, all in aid of explaining the unique Americaness of the sundae.

Sundaes are us, and they have been pleasuring our collective senses ever since April 3, 1892.  On that day an enterprising Ithaca, New York, soda fountain proprietor accessorized a scoop of ice cream with sweet syrup and candied cherry, then named it after the Sabbath.  A sundae is not just any dish, but a dessert that is original, enduring, and authentically American.  For the past 120 years the ice cream sundae has been a symbol of our abundance and appetite, our ingenuity, and our never-lost youth. In their assembly, sundaes provide an unrestrained opportunity to express our essential character.

During the twists and turns our country has taken over the past 120 years, ice cream sundaes have been standing by to lift our spirits.  After the 1929 stock market crash, one of the few luxuries that average folks could afford was the democratically-priced sundae.  During World War II, patriotic Victory Sundaes included a Defense Saving Stamp with every purchase, while the Navy commissioned floating ice cream parlors to boost troop morale.  In wartime and in hard times, home refrigerators were stocked with ice creams that, with a dash of imagination, provided the basis for an irresistible sundae.