Pretzel Pie Ice Cream Makes Debut

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

A beloved and iconic dessert served in Mercersburg Academy’s dining hall since the 1980s is now available in ice cream form. South Mountain Creamery (of Middletown, MD) and Utz Quality Foods (of Hanover, PA) worked with the Academy to create Mercersburg Pretzel Pie Ice Cream, which features salted chocolate-covered pretzels in vanilla ice cream topped with caramel. 

Pints can be purchased at the True Blue Cafe in the Simon Student Center on campus, and will soon be available for sale at One North Coffee and Bake Shop in downtown Mercersburg; the school community enjoyed the world premiere of the ice cream at a Monday-night dinner December 9 in Ford Hall.

Utz Quality Foods was founded in 1921 by William and Sallie Utz, the grandparents of Mercersburg Board of Regents Vice President/President-elect Stacie Rice Lissette ’85, P ’14, ’14, ’17, ’23. (Lissette’s husband, Dylan, is the company’s president and CEO.) The school also has an existing partnership with South Mountain Creamery, a family-owned dairy farm and ice cream parlor about an hour’s drive from campus, to supply the school’s dining hall (operated by SAGE Dining Services) with a variety of dairy products.

South Mountain Creamery worked with Molly Jones Mancini ’79, P ’15, ’18, Utz’s technical services manager, and Jeff Gray, the school’s director of dining services, on the logistics of turning a Mercersburg post-dinner tradition into an ice cream to be sold in prepackaged pints.

South Mountain’s co-owners Tony and Abby Brusco, their daughter Sophia, and sales representative Chris Horn joined artist Tom Chalkley (who designed the Mercersburg-specific artwork which adorns the pints) in enjoying dinner in the dining hall with students, faculty, and families on the night the ice cream made its debut. 

In yet another Mercersburg connection, Chalkley is married to Ruth Quinn ’79, a classmate of Mancini’s and the daughter of longtime faculty member Jay Quinn. (Jay Quinn taught and worked at Mercersburg for more than 45 years; he passed away in 2012.)

And in case you’re wondering, the original pretzel pie recipe continues to be a dining-hall favorite and a mainstay on the menu.