If you want to know your gelato gusti (or flavors) you can learn them right on your flights to Italy. Here is a simple guide to 14 Italian gelato flavors that are among the most popular ones you will find at the gelateria.
Creamy, Chocolatey & Nutty
Fior di latte (sweet cream)
Cioccolato Fondente: Dark Chocolate
Stracciatella (vanilla chocolate chip)
Bacio (chocolate hazelnut cream)
Zuppa Inglese (English trifle)
(Pronounced: tSoo/pah een/glay/Say)
This literally translates to “English soup”…but stay with us on this one. No, this not a creamy take on chicken noodle or cabbage soup, we promise. This flavor is named after the popular British dessert called “trifle” — a scrumptious dish made of alternating layers of custard and sweet, alcohol-soaked sponge cake. Since this dessert is usually made in a large glass bowl, much like a soup, this flavor of gelato took on the interpretation. The base of zuppa Inglese is made with cream and often flavored with a sweet wine such as Sherry (to mimic the flavors in a trifle) and bits of vanilla cookies are crushed into it to act as the sponge cake.
As one of the signature Italian gelato flavors, you’ll find at almost any and every gelateria, pistacchio is a good indicator of the quality of the gelato of the establishment making it. Although more pleasing to the eye, the color should not be a bright or shocking green as we’re used to seeing pistachio ice creams. Instead, you’ll know your pistacchio gelato is of the best quality if it’s a pale, dusty green.
Fresh & Fruity
Don’t let the spelling (or the color) fool you! Besides being a tongue twister, anana is Italian for pineapple.
Amarena (sour cherry cream)
Amarena literally translates to “sour cherry” but if you try this gelato flavor you’ll find that the cherries mixed in aren’t really sour at all! This flavor starts with a creamy base of fior di latte with the sour cherries in a thick syrup mixed in. The cherries themselves are similar to the candied (and sometimes brandied) ones you sometimes get in a nice cocktail.
Depending on the gelateria you visit, the coco gelato flavor can vary. At certain shops this is a light and creamy, subtle coconut flavored gelato and at others you might find a much sweeter version with spall bits of fresh or toasted coconut bits mixed in.