Sno-Balls Spot Imperial Woodpecker Pops Up Again


Walk by Imperial Woodpecker’s new digs on MacDougal, and you may get a free sample.

In a city that can’t get enough frozen treats in the summer, Imperial Woodpecker was a nearly unique presence on Seventh Avenue South last summer. It shaved New Orleans-style snow cones, deposited them in Chinese carryout cartons, and fielded an outlandish menu of strange, and very artificial, flavors. Organic they were not. Delicious they often were.

The new location of Imperial Woodpecker on MacDougal Street

But just as we were getting used to it, Imperial Woodpecker mysteriously disappeared , leading us to describe it as a “pop-down.”

Now, the corpse has re-animated, right in the middle of MacDougal’s cheap eats strip just south of the NYU campus, and with an expanded menu.

Fork in the Road picked one of the new flavors, cherimoya, and sampled it. The name refers to a tropical fruit also known as a custard apple. The sno-ball was a very pale green, and the flavor somewhat bubble-gummy. Still, it was refreshing, and we hope to eat our way through more of the new flavors in the future — especially when the temperature soars, and you want something less rich and creamy than ice cream, gelato, or fro-yo.

Prepare for this one to disappear unexpectedly, too.

Imperial Woodpecker
124 MacDougal Street

The cherimoya sno-ball, served in a Chinese carryout container

Next: The new menu


The new menu includes several new flavors.

Check out some postings from last year’s glorious Frozen Treat Fortnight


Tejal Rao’s Our 10 Best Ice Creams in NYC