A power player in the Melbourne’s gelato scene, Piccolina Gelateria has gone from strength to strength with two current stores and have now embarked on their next big adventure, St Kilda! Summer breeze and a fair crowd around…I was ready to try anything and everything I could get my hands on as a self-confessed gelato addict!
I had the pleasure of attending the Store Launch of Piccolina Gelateria’s new St Kilda outpost. Drawing inspiration from its stores in Hawthorn and Collingwood, the store brings a beachy St Kilda vibe to it all with a purpose built serving station out the front window and outdoor seating for the summery months. The space is small with only a few counter seats indoors but why be stuck inside when you’re in the heart of Acland Street?!
Small in size but not in heart, the staff seem passionate and friendly with a good understanding of the product they are serving. With a rotating schedule of 4 flavours a week they sure are kept on their toes! An extensive range of gelati to choose from otherwise with your usual suspects of Salted Caramel and ‘Better than Nutella’ being crowd favourites when I was there.
On to the actual gelato, I was lucky enough to try 6 flavours (unfortunately that was as much as my body could handle). Before breaking down each one, I have to state the general consensus on all these flavours is how natural it tastes. The love and passion for the product is there and the gelato is more of a call back to traditional Italian gelato than the ice cream that is served in Melbourne. Beautifully creamy and light…this is the way ice cream should be made and enjoyed!
Salted Caramel: I’m a huge fan of Salted Caramel in everything but this gelato was an exceptional stand out. Beautifully creamy with touches of bitterness from the pure caramel swirled throughout it. Perfectly balanced and I really enjoyed the smooth texture.
Pistachio: Stepped out of my comfort zone on this one and asked the staff for her favourite flavour. Normally I hate Pistachio but surprising I loved this one! I find the flavour is quite overwhelming and grainy most of the time but this one didn’t and also didn’t compromise the texture. The pistachio is an undercurrent to a well made gelato in this case. A great starter for those who don’t love pistachio, it reminded reminded me of vanilla with an aftertaste of sweetness and pistachio.
White Chocolate: This was not as sweet as your usual white chocolate flavour and came out with more balance and more of a milky taste or a vanilla milkshake . Again, I don’t think Piccolina can do any wrong with the creaminess of all its flavours! I loved how the cold drew my attention to the other elements rather than just to the sweetness. Really enjoyable to eat.
Mint: One of my favourites though I know a lot of people aren’t a fan. It had a low key mint flavour with dark choc chips running throughout. Really subtle and non herb taste to the mint which I really appreciated. It definitely did not have any artificial mint flavouring to it so don’t expect minty freshness like your usual mint treats.
Mango Sorbet: I wouldn’t call this a sorbet as it was very different to the usual sorbet I’ve had. It was not icy at all and incredibly creamy and delicious. It could’ve been more defined in its mango flavour to promote some freshness. I think it was more of a mango ice cream than a sorbet.
Passionfruit Sorbet: Passionfruit is one of those flavours you love but makes your face pucker up after each bite. This was the exception to that though as it doesn’t make you cringe and is quite subtle in taste and texture. This difference means it isn’t a chore to keep going back for more. Again not really a sorbet though, the creaminess made me think more ice cream than sorbet.
YOU HAVE TO TRY THIS PLACE….or any of their stores to be honest. The gelato is as delicious as they come and as freshly made as you’ll get outside of Italy. If creamy, flavourful and authentic gelato is all you are after then look no further…Piccolina Gelateria is the place for you!