Some general gelato learnings
1. Cones look like American sugar cones, but are the same taste and texture as a regular American cone.
2. Ask for a taste. "Assagio per favore" and then name the flavor.
3. In Venice, the flavor selection was usually the same wherever we stopped. That was different in Florence and Rome, however.
My very first taste of Italian gelato was at this gelateria a block off of Saint Mark’s Square on the Calle Larga St. Marco. I went for a safe flavor for my first foray – plain old chocolate. It was better than chocolate -smooth, creamy and tasted more like a Fudgsicle than chocolate ice cream. One scoop was 2 € - the most expensive of the gelato I bought in Venice - being close to one of the biggest tourist draws in Venice. As you can see in the other entries, as you get further away from the main drag, the prices go down.
As it was my first taste of gelato, and I had nothing else to compare it to, I gave this gelato 4 cones out of 5, though it turned out to be a bit pricey.
Again just beyond St. Mark’s square on Calle delle Ostreghe we found what we started calling the "international sign for gelato" – a huge cone cut out with three scoops. It was warm, our whistles needed whetting and we stopped at this bar out of convenience and a taste for more gelato. Still a bit on the conservative side, I asked about the Crème del Doge – which turns out to be vanilla with bits of chocolate in it. It tasted a bit like cookies and cream. I ordered two scoops in a cone for 1.5 €. I preferred the chocolate over this flavor, but it was still tasty.
I gave this gelato 3 cones out of 5, with a nod at the lower cost.
Maison de la Crepes
Here I am in Italy and I’m stopping for gelato in a French-named bar in the Rialto shopping area, at the base of the Pont De L’Olio. The reason for stopping was mainly the price. 1 € got one scoop of chocolate in a cone.
This was the creamiest of the gelato I tasted in Venice, and the price was definitely right. I give it 4 cones out of 5.
Ca’ D’ Oro
Located on Cannaregio, this gelato was by far the cheapest that we encountered in Venice. For a mere .90 € I bought a cone with a single scoop of vanilla. I found it very good, smooth and creamy. The vanilla – and all the flavors I tried, were very strong flavors – in a good way.
While the cheapest, it wasn’t necessarily the best tasting, while not bad. I give it a solid 3 cones out of 5.