Gelateria del Teatro
A long queue is always a good sign, and Gelateria del Teatro (Via dei Coronari 65) is permanently mobbed by hungry Romans. There are always some surprises in the daily-changing list (concocted in the laboratorio in the back): dark chocolate with Nero d’Avola wine, say, or fennel and caramelized almonds. Scenically sited next to an old theatre, it’s also the perfect place for that obligatory “Here’s me in Rome with an ice cream” snap – sit on the theatre’s crumbling stone steps and tuck in.
Must-tries garden sage and raspberry; ricotta with cherries
Il Gelato di Claudio Torcè
Rome’s recent gelateria renaissance is largely thanks to master gelataio Claudio Torcè (ilgelatodiclaudiotorce.com), who led the movement towards all-natural gelato a few years ago, and now sells his sensational ice cream from seven locations across Rome. With a hundred flavours, running the gamut from savoury (celery, gorgonzola) to sweet (blueberries and cream, apple strudel) and with much in between, you could arguably have a full meal here and leave very happy.
Must-tries black sesame; pear and cinnamon
Image by Natasha Foges
Florence’s top gelateria now has a branch in Rome. Carapina is owned by gelato pioneer Simone Bonini, whose recipes include booze-infused ice cream – the cream of whiskey flavour almost works in lieu of a post-dinner drink – and cheese flavours (parmesan is popular). Bonini’s insistence on premium-quality ingredients ensures the ice cream is fresh, creamy and delicious (and justifies the higher-than-average prices). Unusually for a gelateria, there are tables here, so you can take the weight off and give this gourmet gelato the attention it deserves.
Must-tries nero assoluto (chocolate sorbet); Vin Santo
Come Il Latte
At Come Il Latte two-thirds of each scoop is cream, which accounts for the wonderfully silky end product. The shop is cute as a button, with gushing chocolate fountains and floor-to-ceiling milk bottles (the name means “Like Milk”). If you were once the sort of kid who smothered their ice cream in sauces and sprinkles, this is the place for you: toppings are a big deal here, with white or dark melted chocolate poured inside your cone or on top, plus flavoured whipped cream and a chocolate-dipped cookie for dunking.
Must-tries caramel with pink Himalayan salt; pineapple and basil