To whet your appetite for The Pitch's annual Best of Kansas City issue, we're counting down our favorite Top 50 dishes each weekday until October 7.
Paletas, the popsicle treats sold by Paleterias Tropicana at its flagship store on Southwest Boulevard as well as at shops across the metro, are the best kind of frozen-treat alchemy. The flat, oblong popsicles have the texture of a Creamsicle, the taste of a juice pop from childhood, and a price that anybody's allowance can cover ($1.59 to $1.79).
Think about the joy of a carton of chocolate milk when you were younger -- that's what awaits you when you bite into the fruit-milk paleta. The creamy bars slowly coat your mouth with flavor as you eat.
If you can't find a flavor to eat among the dozens that are available at Tropicana, then you have forsaken all fruit. The challenge is usually picking just one when presented with the mango with chili powder and the pina colada. The water-based flavors are slightly lighter, like a frozen agua fresca, while the cream-based paletas are for indulging.
Go get a bite of summer, any time of year.
Our list so far:
No. 49: Il Parma from Bella Napoli
No. 42: Apple strudel from Grunauer
No. 40: E-Crush from Hi-Hat Coffee
No. 34: Stroud's cinnamon rolls
No. 33: Smoked Polish from Werner's