WALLINGFORD — Praline’s Ice Cream recently changed its name to Banana’s Ice Cream, but is still under the same ownership and at the same location along Route 5.
Owner Vince Caramanello said the name was changed earlier this month because the store recently switched ice cream vendors from Pralines, a franchise with about 12 locations in Connecticut, to The Big Dipper, a Connecticut-based ice cream distributor founded in 1986.
“Everything is the same in terms of the quality of ice cream and the location and the staff. The only thing that really changed is the signage,” said Caramanello, who co-owns the business with his wife, Maureen.
Caramanello said he decided to branch off from Pralines, citing a change in the franchise’s business model. The move makes Banana’s more of a “standalone store” and “gives me freedom within the the agreements with the vendors,” Caramanello said.
“We had a very good relationship with (Pralines), but when they changed their business model, I had to change mine to meet my needs,” he said.
A post on the store’s website said, “In order to keep our prices as low as possible for our customers, we have decided to find a new ice cream vendor. We have chosen someone who has made his own ice cream since 1986 and uses nothing but premium ingredients.”
The store’s name was officially changed on April 1, Caramanello said. The store’s 40 flavors have mostly remained the same with some variations and rotating seasonal flavors. The store offers hard and soft-serve ice cream, as well as sorbets, sherbets, frozen yogurt and sundaes.
Pralines first opened in Wallingford in 1996 and has been located at 1122 N. Colony Road since 1999, said Caramanello.
“We’ve had terrific response over the past 20 years and we appreciate the patronage,” Caramanello said.
TripAdvisor rates the ice cream shop as one of the best in Wallingford.