A popular dessert franchise is returning to the Triangle. When and where it opens

A favorite late inning treat at Durham Bulls games is set to expand with new locations in the Triangle.

Cary, long a destination for New York delicacies, will soon get some of that Philadelphia water ice.

Rita’s Italian Ice is opening the Triangle’s only location in Cary’s Northwoods Market shopping center.

The popular Italian ice and custard shop currently has zero Triangle locations, aside from the concessions stand open seasonally during Bulls games.

The new Rita’s franchise is owned by Jill Brega, whose deal is for five Wake County locations.

The first will open at 921 N. Harrison Ave. in Cary, moving into a former Subway location and next to the Koi Ramen shop. Brega said she first tasted Rita’s Italian Ice when her family moved outside of Philadelphia a few years ago.

“My husband said you’ve got to try this really cool place, and Rita’s became a regular staple in our house,” Brega said. “There’s nothing really like it here in the Triangle.”

The new Rita’s in Cary was first mentioned by the Triangle Business Journal.

Brega said the new Rita’s will aim for a November opening and the last few sparse days of ice cream weather before the chill of winter. The Cary Rita’s will open with two walk-up windows for customers to order and for delivery services to pick up.

It’s been about five years since the last non-ballpark Rita’s closed in the Triangle, Brega said, but she expects the brand already has recognition.

“There are so many northern transplants, (Rita’s) always comes up in conversations,” Brega said. “It’s great to have a base that already understands your product. The nice thing about Rita’s is it’s so family friendly.”