Marvel, Lido Beach’s iconic ice cream stand, reopened for the season in February with new owners. Last November, the Fragioudakis family bought the place from Arthur Katsafouros. (Katsafouros, Marvel’s second owner, purchased it in 1986 from the Papageorge family who opened it in 1951.)
I stopped by recently to see if anything but ownership had changed.
Nope. Not a thing. Heading west on Lido Boulevard, I noted that virtually every car making a left at the light at Allevard Street was U-turning into Marvel’s parking lot. At 3 in the afternoon, there were dozens of back-pack-laden kids just released from school waiting on line.
Stavroula Fragioudakis told me that her family did nothing beyond repainting Marvel’s exterior. The menu remains exclusively soft-serve ice cream (vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, pistachio and coffee) and yogurt (vanilla, chocolate, banana, peanut butter and sugar-free) served in cups, cones, shakes and floats.
“Our bestselling item is a vanilla cone with rainbow sprinkles,” Fragioudakis said. “Vanilla cone, vanilla cone, vanilla cone all day long.”
Marvel’s signature item, however, is the brown-bonnet wherein a fully loaded cone or cup is upended into a vat of chocolate topping that instantly hardens, forming a crisp shell.
Another signature topping is Marvel mix, a blend of rainbow and chocolate sprinkles with crunchy chocolate crumbs -- think everything bagels but sweet.
Cones and cups are $3.75, $5 and $6.50 (add 50 cents for brown bonnets or toppings); shakes are $5.75 and $6.75.
Marvel's full name was Marvel Dairy Whip; the new corporate name is Marvel Frozen Dairy. It is at 258 Lido Blvd., Lido Beach, 516-889-4232.