Do you remember when, Chattanooga? Have you ever bought ice cream from Dairy Gold?

Trivial Question: What ice cream flavor did most 20th century Chattanoogans prefer?

If sales in one of the city’s iconic destinations for dairy delicacies are any indication, the answer is vanilla.

About 65% of customers at the old Dairy Gold restaurant chain chose vanilla ice cream over chocolate, the other traditional soft-serve option, the owners reported.

This late 1980s photo of Dairy Gold on Dayton Boulevard recalls a time when the local drive-thru restaurant chain, specializing in frozen treats and “Plentyburgers,” boasted of several locations in the Chattanooga area. During the summer months, ice cream made up more than half of Dairy Gold restaurant sales here, the owners reported.

The location pictured, at the intersection of Dayton Boulevard and Signal Mountain Road, was number 5 for the small chain, which also included stores on Brainerd Road, Broad Street, Hixson Pike and Ringgold Road. In the 1990s, the Dayton Boulevard location was the only remaining Dairy Gold, and it continued to operate until the mid-2000s. The building now houses the SGO Designer Glass store.

(READ MORE: Have you ever had ice cream at this Brainerd Road drive-through?)

Originally, restaurants included awnings providing shade and a shelter where motorists parked and had waiters take their orders. In the 1990s, the Red Bank location was billed as “the oldest streetside service establishment in the area,” although it also had a small indoor dining area.

This photo was taken by Sam Hall, curator of Chattanooga History.com, who grew up in the area.

ChattanoogaHistory.com

Started by history enthusiast Sam Hall in 2014, ChattanoogaHistory.com is maintained to present historical images in the highest resolution available.

If you have any photo negatives, glass plate negatives, or non-digital original prints taken in the Chattanooga area, contact Sam Hall to find out how they can be digitized and stored free of charge.

“I would have liked to enjoy this iconic restaurant more often,” Hall said in an email. “Located in the neighborhood nostalgically known as Valdeau, it was also adjacent to a red food store, making it an ideal destination for a meal or snack after the races. “

The Dairy Gold chain was founded in 1949 and operated for decades by husband and wife John N. and Katherine Klein. Katherine Klein’s father, Frank Kollmansperger, was the founder of another iconic Chattanooga food brand, Kay’s Ice Cream, according to news reports.

John Klein once said of the popularity of Dairy Gold’s curbside service: “People just like to sit in their cars and watch the traffic. It’s a natural diversion.

The original Dairy Gold on Brainerd Road was near the Brainerd Theaters. In the late 1940s, he was offering ice cream cones for as little as 5 cents each. A 1949 newspaper advertisement also offered free parking for moviegoers as a bonus.

Besides the ice cream dishes, the Dairy Gold menu included frozen yogurt, chicken and chili sandwiches and fries, among others. The chain’s signature Plentyburgers were made from 100% ground beef shaped into patties at the time of order. In the 1980s, a combination of a Plentyburger, fries, and a drink sold for $ 1.49.

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Remember when, Chattanooga, is released on Saturday. Contact Mark Kennedy at [email protected]

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