It seems like we are getting a late summer in Melbourne so it’s perfect timing for a post on a few of the best new gelati stores which have opened recently. The thing I love about both Pidapipo in Carlton and Il Melograno in Northcote is they both serve their gelati up from covered stainless steel containers known as pozzetti: exactly as they do in the best places in Italy. This is a significant sacrifice by both stores as they don’t get to entice potential customers with a beautiful visual display but it’s a clear indication of a focus on substance over style. Keeping the gelati out of the light ensures that it is served in premium condition for the ultimate lickability. Here’s my take on the two:
There couldn’t be a prettier looking gelati store than Pidapipo with it’s pops of gelati coloured pastels brightening up the artfully distressed surrounds. Even though the gelati is all tucked away out of sight owner Lisa Valmorbida cleverly tempt you in with a bubbling chocolate fountain. The gelati is home made on site from top notch ingredients and you won’t find any artificial flavours or ingredients. Flavours range from more traditional combinations like ricotta and fig with a few more creative flavours like a christmas pudding gelati over the festive season. I went for the salted caramel which was seriously smooth, fluffy and oh so creamy. It’s really a tie between Pidapipo and Spring Street Grocer for the best gelati in Melbourne in my book.
Details: Pidapipo, 299 Lygon Street, Carlton Vic (Ph 03 9347 4596)
Damage: Reasonable. $4 for one flavour or $5 for two.
2. Il Melograno
Il Melongrano offers more than just gelati. This old glass factory right in the heart of High Street Northcote serves up coffee and a winning lunch and brunch menu from its airy interior. Polished concrete floors highlight the buildings industrial past but the main attraction is hidden away in metal tubs which are sunken into the counter.
Again the gelati is made on site without any nasties in it. What I loved about the gelati here is how savoury it tastes – none of that overly sugary hit that you get from other places. There’s an extensive range of gelati flavours on offer at Il Melograno with some more unusual combinations like Iranian pistachio and pear and elderflower but all rely on natural ingredients.
I devoured a scoop of the chocolate and rosemary gelati which was rich and creamy along with the tangy and refreshing lemon and basil granita. I also loved that you can eat the cups as well. I think Pidapipo may have the slight edge on Il Melograno in terms of creaminess of the gelati from that “just churned” taste Il Melograno is well worth a visit as well.