Where to Eat Gelato in Venice
Many of you readers agreed it was great advice in my last post about visiting Venice: Forget the map and get lost in those winding, labyrinthine streets, go up and down the foot bridges and endless stairs, and find yourself navigating passageways that will inevitably lead to… a gelateria!
I can’t even guess the number of gelaterias there are in Venice. You’re not likely to see a street without one. And boy do I love those streets with half a dozen!
But… how to choose?
I arrived in Venice ready to do a throw down of the best gelato shops in the city. I had my list of addresses starred on my map (yes the same map that would end up staying in my pocket all day long). I headed straight for La Boutique del Gelato near Campo Santa Maria Formosa (the tiramisu was subtle, not too strong and the stracciatella was like chocolate chips floating in clouds). I then made my way to Il Doge by the Campo Santa Margherita (where the mint was bright green and refreshing). I made sure I had the address for Alaska in Sante Croce, to try the less traditional flavors like avocado, artichoke and fig. And I had the addresses for Clausin, Nico and Paolin too. But you really don’t need to. And I quickly realized I was going to simply go where my feet took me, and try the gelato there! I even stumbled upon Grom doing that, which has shops all over Italy and is now quite popular in New York City and Paris too.
Glance in any shop with its piles of creamy gelato shaped like mountains in their metal bins, with that artistic swirl the Italians behind the counter give it. The colors and flavors practically jump out at you. There’s usually a bit of the main ingredient on top of each flavor, so you know just what it is. At this point, you can practically taste it. So ask for a cono or a coppa (the former being the more popular), and know that you can’t go wrong. Especially if you spot the Italian word, artigianale (artisanal). That way you know it’s being made on premises with fresh ingredients, rather than from a frozen mix. And hey, it’s only one Euro (give or take) for a scoop, so you can always try again… and again !
Anyone have a personal favorite in Venice? I suppose I could make an exception and mark it on my map for next time…