Ice-cream, gelato, granita – this city loves the cold stuff. And whether you’re at the beach or in the city, you’re never far from a spoon, cone or stick of it. Here’s a round up of what’s happening in some of our favourite pushers of what we can’t seem to get enough of.
Gelato Messina at the beach
We’re not saying Messina has the monopoly on great ice-cream-related ideas. But we’re not, not saying it, either. One of its great ideas has been parking an old-school ice-cream truck (RIP, soft serve with Flake) at the north end of Bondi Beach when the days heat up. It's a meticulously restored retro van. And the best part? Its name is Choccy McChocface.
It’s serving hand-held, beach-friendly treats including “Nagmums” – milk gelato covered in dark chocolate; “Equality Time” – salted caramel and fior di latte gelato dipped in milk choc and biscuit crumbs (its take on the Golden Gaytime); “Milo High Club” – malted vanilla gelato layered with malted chocolate sauce and dusted with Messina Milo; and Messina’s take on icy poles, made with real fruit. This week’s flavours are strawberry, guava with passionfruit, and blood orange with orange.
Ciccone & Sons
This weekend celebrate the lunar new year at Ciccone & Sons with the spicy-sounding orange and Sichuan pepper gelato. If you’re going a double scoop and need recommendations, co-owner Sean O’Brien says the zingy orange and ginger sorbetto (sorbet) has been a particular hit this summer.
All the gelato at Redfern’s Ciccone & Sons is is made from scratch with jersey milk, without pre-made pastes or bases. The handwritten menu changes regularly; flavours on rotation include mango, raspberry, pistachio and stracciatella, as well as sesame and rockmelon. If gelato ain’t your jam, there’s a range of sundaes, cannoli and rum baba, as well as “an ever-increasing list of amaro”.
Make like Quay’s Peter Gilmore and hotfoot it to Rivareno in Barangaroo or on Crown Street in Surry Hills. There, gelato is made at the start of each day with ingredients imported from Italy. While Gilmore’s favourite flavour is fior di latte (made with soft cheese), it’s also whipping up batches of peach sorbet, as well as a recently launched flavour made from sheep’s-milk ricotta and Calabrian lemon peel.
Also new? Crema tropicale: gelato made with sheep’s-milk ricotta and layers of house-made passionfruit compote, as well as cream biscotti, which is inspired by cookies and cream and made from fior de panna (cream) gelato, gianduia (hazelnut-chocolate spread) and chocolate biscuits. It’s also introduced the refreshing watermelon, pink grapefruit and lemon granita.
Servo icons including Magnums and Cornettos have just been given the vegan treatment, joining Ben & Jerry’s in giving our friends with plant-based diets more ice-cream options.
Pick up classic vanilla coated in chocolate, or follow in the footsteps of lauded Sydney chef Clayton Wells (Automata, A1 Canteen) and get an almond one (his preferred flavour). They’re made from pea protein and coated in dairy-free chocolate and a box of three will set you back $7.
Snap up a four pack of vegan Cornettos on your next trip to the supermarket, or get a dairy-free raspberry and coconut Weis bar when you’re filling up petrol. Ben & Jerry’s has been doing its ice-cream in vegan guises down under for a while now, and for 12 bucks you can get a pint of its chocolate fudge brownie, cinnamon buns, peanut butter, or the cookies and coconut seven-layer bar.
Want more options? Here’s our gelato and ice-cream guide.