The Best Gelato in Italy: Save These Recommendations

| Thu, 09/12/2019 - 00:00
Sergio Dondoli gelato chef with a tray of gelato cups

At ITALY Magazine, we’re always in search of good gelato, our favorite treat.  

One gelato guide we refer to for the top gelaterie and gelato trends in Italy is published by Gambero Rosso, a leading food and wine magazine and publishing group.

In its “Gelaterie d’Italia” 2019 edition, Gambero Rosso features more than 350 gelato parlors across Italy, with 43 of them getting the ‘Three Cones’ award, the highest recognition.

Trends for 2019 include: an attention to the quality of ingredients, which are sought in the places most renowned for their production, such as Madagascar for vanilla, Bronte in Sicily and Stigliano in Basilicata for pistachio; a rediscovery of local ingredients; the use of lesser-known varieties of fruits, but also vegetables and flowers, and of traditional recipes adapted for gelato.  

Below are some of the top prized gelato parlors in Italy, selected according to most popular cities/destinations.

Turin alone gets three top prized gelaterie: Alberto Marchetti, Mara dei Boschi and Ottimo! Buono non basta. Add them to your list of the five best places to try chocolate in Turin

If you visit the Italian Riviera, don’t miss Cremeria Spinola in Chiavari, and Profumo in Genova. Check this insider’s guide to Genoa, an underrated city. 

Fashion capital Milan boasts two gelaterie with a Three Cones mention: Paganelli, and Pavé – Gelati & Granite.

Venice gets none, but in nearby Mestre, a ten-minute train ride, you’ll find Chocolat; while in Verona, hometown of Romeo and Juliet, is Zeno Gelato e Cioccolato.

Foodieland Emilia-Romagna has eight gelato parlors with Three Cones award, the region with the most; three of them are in Bologna: Cremeria Santo Stefano (a favorite of mine), Cremeria Scirocco and Stefino; also check out Bloom in Modena and Ciacco in Parma.

Tuscany, an all-time favorite with tourists, does well with five Three Cones mentions, which include: Carapina and Gelateria della Passera in Florence, De’ Coltelli in Pisa, and Dondoli in central Piazza della Cisterna in San Gimignano (be prepared to wait in line for this one – Sergio Dondoli, the master gelato chef, is quite the star).

In Rome, head to: La Gourmandise, Otaleg!, and Claudio Torcè, the latter awarded a prize also for best chocolate gelato. We have other recommendations for some of the top gelato spots in Rome

Finally, down south in Sicily, try Cappadonia Gelati in Palermo.