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[Photographs: Liz Clayton]

America's custard literacy has long suffered in the dark ages. But thanks to a few players like Culver's, New York's Shake Shack, and the artisanal ice cream movement, the embrace of a truly creamy frozen cream, made with rich eggs, may one day extend beyond the Midwest.

But when in the milk mecca of America's Dairyland, it takes only a glance at the billboard along Interstate 43 to find out the flavor of the day at Kopp's Frozen Custard of Milwaukee. Actually, there are two flavors of the day. (The midwest likes to double up on things.)

And while one could wax on and on about the virtues and superiority of frozen custard itself, today I'm just here to talk about the milkshake: you won't find a better custard-to-milk marriage than at Kopp's, and on the occasion of my last visit, I couldn't help but ask the soda fountaineers for a lush nutmeg-striped eggnog milkshake: even more decadent than drinking regular eggnog.

Kopp's thick, flavorful shakes and custards are rivaled of course by Milwaukee's other big name in frozen custard: Leon's drive-in. But to these straw-drawing lips, it's Kopp's velvety custard that blends best with milk, toning down the richness of each taste just enough while prolonging the experience through the slow pleasures of a shake.

And though eggnog shakes are a seasonal offering at Kopp's, we can surely bide our time having a Tiramisu, Irish Mint, or Pretzels and Beer custard milkshake, right? Only the flavor forecast can predict what's whirring in their milkshake makers, but Kopp's can pretty much promise you something delicious no matter when you stop by.

Kopp's Frozen Custard Glendale

5373 North Port Washington Road, Milwaukee WI 53217 (map)
414-961-2006; kopps.com

Kopp's Frozen Custard Brookfield

18880 W. Bluemound Road, Brookfield WI 53045 (map)
262-789-9490; kopps.com

Kopp's Frozen Custard Greenfield

7631 W. Layton Avenue, Greenfield WI 53220 (map)
414-282-4312; kopps.com

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