What’s Summer without a trip to the BDI?
The Bridge Drive-In is an absolute Winnipeg icon. The drive-in was established in 1957 and is definitely one of the hottest spots in town, especially on a warm evening. It is not uncommon for one to have trouble finding parking and then find themselves standing in a long line. I’m not sure if it’s actually slow or just seems slow because you are excited about the ice cream that awaits you and are breaking a sweat from standing in the hot sun. Regardless, the crowd and the line-up are actually part of the draw. Everyone wants to be where the action is and the BDI is always hopping, especially in the evenings. We stopped by after our zoo trip and it was mid afternoon. We did wait in line, but no more than a few minutes.
What’s the Big Deal?
We have been coming to the BDI for years and in my opinion the ice cream is absolutely delicious. It’s super creamy and there are many options to choose from. I will often opt for a simple chocolate twist dipped in chocolate ~ still a favourite from when I was a kid. The ice cream menu is extensive with many original items that can’t be found elsewhere. Everyone has their favourite. I’ve tried my share of the specialty dishes like the “Cantaberry”, “Peach Velvet” and the “Goog”, but over the years, I have found that I often stick with a cone and am never disappointed. Their sundaes are also really delicious.
If you read reviews about the BDI, you will generally get great reviews, but you will notice that some will complain about the price, parking, line-ups or even the product not being superior. Let me tell you up front ~ you need to go with the idea of embracing the whole experience of BDI. You might have trouble finding a parking spot and will definitely wait in line. I have never been there and walked right up to place my order. Be prepared for that. As far as the ice cream goes, I can’t tell you what it is made from or if in fact it is better than other ice cream shops around the city, but I will say this it is super creamy and delicious and there is no other location in the city that can boast the perfect riverside location that the BDI has. The success of this business rests just as much on location as it does on service and product, if not more. The drive-in is sitting along the river just steps from a beautiful walking bridge. There are plenty of benches for you to sit and enjoy your ice cream with a beautiful scenic view of the bridge and river, or you can enjoy a walk, over the water via the bridge.
The BDI is literally for everyone. It is a great place to take the family for ice cream and my 10 year old son even recognized the “romantic feel” of the location and announced that he would definitely being bringing a future girlfriend here on a date. Many couples stop by for a treat and walk, as it really is a perfect spot for “date night”.
As far as price goes, I don’t feel that it is outrageous at all. The kids both had large chocolate twist cones with chocolate dip and I had a small chocolate twist in a sugar cone with chocolate dip. The cost was $10.45. When we go to other establishments we will often pay $15 to $20 for all 4 of us. Obviously, if you order specialty items, you will be paying much more, but they are loaded with items like fresh fruit, nuts, sauces, etc. I personally find the prices comparable to other places and have never been disappointed with the product.
Again, BDI is not the place to stop to pick-up ice cream on the way home. If you aren’t prepared to be patient and really enjoy the entire outing, go to McDonalds drive through. You’ll be pleased with the low costs and quick service, but if you want to experience something really special ~ the BDI is an absolute Winnipeg “must do”.
The Bridge Drive-In is located at 766 Jubilee in the southern part of Winnipeg. No matter what part of the city you live in or are visiting, it is definitely worth the trip!