Born in Connecticut in 1928, the future King of Ice Cream in South Florida cut his teeth in the restaurant business as a young man helping his father survive the rationing rigors of World War II. Soon after the War the Udell family moved to Hollywood, Florida.
At age 28 Monroe decided to strike out on his own. Having seen the storm of 1947 push the ocean up to Federal Highway, Monroe settled on his present location just North of Stirling Road on Federal Highway. On opening day in 1956, Jaxson’s occupied half of the space it now fills. An open kitchen (predating the trend somewhat), gracefully curving formica counters and ice cream made daily drew the hungry and the curious.
The 1950’s were marked by Monroe’s determination to produce and serve the finest food and Ice Cream anywhere. Busy tourist seasons were followed by summers featuring such entertaining activities as counting the number of cars passing by on Federal Highway. Monroe generated excitement by routinely ignoring laws enforcing racial segregation in both hiring and service. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 got him off the hook and so began an era of major social change.
The 1960’s saw major change at Jaxson’s as well. Monroe expanded into the area that is now the back dining room. A more rustic décor was installed along with the beginning of the immense license plate and antique collections seen to this day. Monroe’s attention to detail never wavered, and Jaxson’s reputation for excellent food and the best Ice Cream continued to grow.
The 1970’s brought further improvement to Jaxson’s. Increased freezer space allowed for the introduction of dozens of new flavors, all still produced by Monroe’s faithful pair of batch freezer machines originally built in the 1940’s. South Florida continued to gain popularity as a winter getaway while word spread about the funky little place in Dania with THE BEST Ice Cream.
1982, Jaxson’s Silver Anniversary Year. An important milestone was reached the same year that EPCOT opened to great fanfare. Despite the publicity blitz to his North, Jaxson’s flourished. Monroe’s diligent efforts to maintain the highest standards kept people coming back for terrific food and the absolute best Ice Cream.
From 1990 to the new millennium Monroe worked tirelessly to insure the Jaxson’s remained synonymous with excellence in food and Ice Cream. No Y2K bug here- the Ice Cream has been made the same way from the beginning. The highest quality ingredients combined with low overrun machinery make Jaxson’s Ice Cream the finest.
The new millennium has seen Jaxson’s recognized for decades of quality achieved through dedication and hard work. Monroe’s original mission was to produce the finest food and Ice Cream possible, and he remains true to that mission everyday. Jaxson’s has recently been featured on the Food Network’s Top Five as the Top Cool Quencher. Bon Appetit, Southern Living and the local press are also fans of Jaxson’s.