Obama tries to soften press with ice cream

President Obama looked to curry favor with his traveling press corps on Thursday, offering to treat reporters to an ice cream cone during a stop at a Minnesota dessert parlor.

"Press, you guys want some? On me. No? Is that unethical?” Obama asked reporters who accompanied him to the Grand Ole Creamery, a Twin Cities chain. “I’m trying to soften you up.”

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Obama told employees of the shop that one of his first jobs was scooping ice cream at Baskin Robbins — eliciting a groan from the workers at the rival parlor.

“No, the point is that my first job was scooping ice cream,” Obama said. “One of you might be president.”

The president ordered a scoop of Black Hills Gold, a caramel-based ice cream with pralines and cookies, in a homemade waffle cone. Obama said in his experience, scooping chocolate was more difficult than flavors like praline because it was harder.

Obama hit the ice cream parlor after a visit to the Golden Fig, a specialty food store whose owner wrote Obama a letter.

“This is the kind of store you want to pop into,” Obama said. “They don't let me do this stuff anymore. I used to be able to do this stuff."

Obama stocked up on snacks, buying salted caramels, chocolates and apple chips. He also picked up a jar of “Minnesalsa,” telling the clerk he favored a spicier variety.

"I'm medium. I like a little body in my salsa. Not too sweet,” Obama said.

The president closed out his shopping with some blue chips and barbecue vinegar. 

“These are not all for me, by the way,” Obama said.