Piccomolo - Irvine
O gelato. Why has the public forsaken you?
While your American cousin, the ice cream, enjoys the adulation of countless Food Network specials and a monopolizing presence in supermarket freezers, you eek out an anonymous existence. I have to drive to a mall, either mini or mega, to find you. Only the Loch Ness Monster is more elusive.
You deserve better. But the very nature of your composition makes mass production impossible. You are made of milk, not cream. And because of its lower fat content, you are a fickle creature. If not served fresh, you'll freeze as hard as a rock in the carton.
Though exactly because of your makeup, you melt more cleanly than ice cream in my mouth and with a more refreshing, not-too-sweet finish.
I'm glad that Piccomolo, a franchise devoted to churning you out daily, has moved into my neighborhood. Just in time to fend off the oppressive heat of August.
Piccomolo's got you presented in rippled heaps inside metal bins and in more flavors than the rainbow has colors. And although they call her "fruit gelato", your sister, the sorbetto, holds her own in another set of bins.
Every time I visit, I take freebie samples from both sides. I taste one tiny spoonful here and a tiny spoonful there. It's hard to choose, because you're all so tempting.
One night, I finally decide that I must have two flavors slathered by spade into my small cup ($3.50). Donatella (chocolate hazelnut) and Cookies and Cream proved an ideal match-up; A Yin-Yang handshake of vanilla, Nutella and Oreo.
Then, on another night, another flavor. This time, a Watermelon sorbetto so ripe and so juicy, it was better than eating the real fruit. Amazing how you've distilled the spirit of summertime into a few ounces. And not a single seed to spit out.
Bravo gelato, and your fruity sister too.
6412 Irvine Blvd
Irvine, CA 92620