We popped over to Summerfest one last time to indulge in a Milwaukee summer treat.

Summerfest claimed quite the summer treat as its own this season; Pete’s Pops made its Big Gig debut this year. 

Pete’s Pops has resided in Milwaukee for a few years now, selling over 20 different flavors; you might have passed one of its carts out and about, or even visited their storefront on 3809 W. Vliet St. The shop prides itself on using fresh, wholesome ingredients in its popsicles, and my fellow Mil Mag colleagues and I were excited to see if these bites would live up to the buzz.

There are three signature Pete’s Pops flavors available at Summerfest, via the Bel Air Cantina stands: Salted Watermelon, Raspberry Lime and Georgia Peach. We went all out and snagged one of each. 

At first, we couldn’t tell the difference between the three flavors. They came in plastic packaging, sans labels. Color was no help, as they were different shades of orange and pink. We attempted going off scent, but it didn’t get us very far.

Fearful of the ice melting, we came to the conclusion that whatever we got, we’d be happy with trying. None of us got what we had initially selected. I got the Georgia Peach instead of the Raspberry Lime I’d previously set my heart on. But, I found I had no complaints. The little bursts of red I thought had been raspberries were actually bits of peach, and the whole thing tasted liked I had just picked a delicious piece of fruit right off the tree. There was a subtle note of either salt or cream (I couldn’t tell which), but I knew from the first lick it complemented the fruitiness.

Elizabeth Johnson ended up with that Raspberry Lime, and she concluded it definitely had a dominant raspberry flavor … she didn’t know there was supposed to be lime in it at first. But to her taste-buds’ surprise, there were specks of lime hidden at the bottom of the pop.

Hannah Hoffmeister hasn’t tried salt on watermelon before, but has heard doing so enhances the sweet flavor. As she savored her Salted Watermelon treat, she noted there was just enough salt to make its presence known, but it was primarily focused on bringing out the watermelon flavor.

These popsicles aren’t your generic, frozen syrup-water you keep in the freezer at home. These are made with fresh local fruits, and we could definitely taste it.

However, they were on the smaller side. By the time I had finished it, I found myself wondering where the rest had gone. At $5 a pop, these sweet treats were a little pricey, as most things sold at Summerfest are. The quality is definitely there, but the quantity’s lacking.

Pete’s Pops at Summerfest maintain their principle juicy and refreshing qualities, and frankly we’d be up to eat them again, whether that’s at a cart, the storefront or the next festival they make a guest appearance at.

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