Located in the hustle and bustle of downtown Lodi is a very unique and creative spot that features a sweet swirl on the original idea of an art gallery; it’s worth the time to check out the Double Dip Gallery.
Originally owned by local fine artist and sign painter Tony Segale, who opened the shop in 2014 as an art gallery that also has an ice cream shop inside of it, the Double Dip is now owned by his daughter Natalie Sauerland, who took over in March of 2021.
The idea to combine an art gallery and an ice cream shop first came to Segale back when he owned an art shop in Walnut Grove and there was a local ice cream shop next door. He would watch people pass by the shop with the sweet treat from next door and knew that when people thought of an art gallery, they typically also thought of no food allowed. But for Segale, seeing how popular the ice cream store was, he got the inspiration to combine the two.
After opening a store in Lodi, later on down the road he combined both the art and the ice cream, his plans officially becoming a reality.
He created the store from the ground up, from the real gold-plated leaves decorating the windows to the design of the logo, he did it all.
Segale, being the painter he is, would paint a good amount of the art showcased in the store and soon found that creating time between scooping ice cream and painting was more difficult than he expected. Fast forward to 2021, Segale had decided that it was becoming too much and that he needed to sell the store; his daughter knew then that the store needed to stay in the family and decided to take it over for her father. She explained that all members of her family have been business owners in Lodi for multiple generations and that it is something natural and normal to own a business in the family.
She also was pregnant with her daughter in the beginning when her father owned it and as time went on her daughter began to grow alongside the shop.
Now Sauerland has ownership while her father still watches over the art side of the store by submitting personal pieces to showcase and approve pieces that artists want to showcase in the shop.
“It’s a family friendly place that helps support the community in our own unique way,” Sauerland expressed.
The ice cream is made by Gunther’s, which is based out of Sacramento and has been in business since the 1940s. Gunther’s is known for its small batch old-fashioned ice cream.
Every season the flavors change except a few fan favorites like birthday cake, which has real chunks of birthday cake in it, and staying most of the time is their red wine sorbet that is made with a special blend made only for the Double Dip Gallery - Michael David’s Petite Petit Sirah.
Other flavors change with the season like their October flavors that included pumpkin and black licorice, November included run raisin and butter brickle and December features the flavor of eggnog.
All the flavors were chosen by Segale to rotate and feature the flavors community members enjoy the most.
They also have fruit freezes to offer, a dairy and sugar free option, as well as milkshakes, sundaes, and fresh poured espresso to go over the flavor of your choosing or on top of a milkshake. One show stopper item on their menu is their ice cream tasting palette. You get to choose five flavors that are scooped onto a blank paint palette along with the choice of five toppings that include hot fudge, cherries, hot caramel, nuts, cone chips, sprinkles and whip cream.
There are many things to look at while enjoying the sweet treat such as paintings, ceramic pieces, and local handmade jewelry.
The art work rotates every two months but every month one person gets to be the spotlight artist and have their own exhibit set up to showcase their top pieces.
The spotlight artist gets to have a kick off at the art shop that occurs the first Saturday of the month from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. where they can choose to paint live or just have a meet and greet with the community.
November spotlight artist was Tracy Abbey and she is also the teacher for the kid’s art classes that recently began. More information on the children’s art classes and the adult classes opening soon can be found on their website: doubledipgallery.com.
Currently their hours of operation are 1 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 1 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Fridays; 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Saturdays; and 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Sundays.
When it gets deeper into the winter months the hours will change slightly by closing an hour earlier on all days and will open at 1 p.m. on the weekends instead of 11 a.m.
The Double Dip Gallery is at 222 W. Pine St., downtown Lodi.