italian jaunt: gelato!


one of the highlights of our recent trip to italy was discovering that the italians like to indulge in their gelato. ordering at least one twin-flavoured cone full of the creamy stuff every day, therefore, i felt as though i was showing an appreciation of the country’s culture (rather than stuffing my face like a greedy child on a seaside holiday).

i’m no connoisseur – i just like sweet things. hence my indiscriminate approach to the flavours on offer, which took in everything from the classics – vanilla, pistachio and chocolate – to the exotic tiramisu and ricciarelli, and the unusual, such as white rice.

i cannot recall all the varieties sampled during our visit, but i remember my favourite experiences. gelateria delle moline (via delle moline, 13b) in bologna is a small shop offering a fair range of flavours. the amarone (sour cherry) – pictured above – was superb, while the lemon ice-cream (abby’s favourite of the trip) presented a pleasing contrast to the creamy sweetness of other gelati.

in assisi we took a break in gran caffe. a salon with a hint of the theatrical, it is elaborately decorated, and has an extensive choice of ice-creams, albeit at a price. the italian sweet treats tiramisu and ricciarelli translated well into ice-cream flavours, and kept me going until my next indulgence… later that day.


my third recollection of ice-cream excellence comes from siena. having arrived on a beautifully sunny day – the perfect excuse to seek out ice-cream! – our first destination had to be brividio ( on the corner of via di citta and via dei pellegrini) . as well as stocking a great selection of flavours, the shop displayed the ice-creams piled up high – as in the picture above – and decorated with appropriate garnish, such as coconut shell, kiwi slices or vanilla pods. the prices were very reasonable here too, and we returned before leaving this pretty town to sample more flavours. the products were good, but the presentation was spectacular.

later we discovered other ice bars which used the same means of showing off their wares, but the marvel of seeing this technique for the first time means that brividio remains a fond memory.

- contributed by david (thank you!)