World's Best Gelato

Sweet Austin shop competes for title of world's best gelato

Sweet Austin shop competes for title of world's best gelato

Dolce Neve gelato
You can sample Dolce Neve's gelato before the team heads to Italy. Photo courtesy of Dolce Neve

Each year, over 40 of the finest gelato makers from across the globe head to Palermo, Italy, to participate in Sherbeth, the International Festival of Artisanal Gelato. The annual festival is a four-day celebration of gelato that features tastings, concerts, open-air workshops, and a competition to crown the best gelato in the world.

For the second year, the folks from Austin's Dolce Neve, one of only two representatives from the U.S., are heading overseas to compete in the event September 29 to October 2. But first, they need your help deciding which flavor they will present to the festival’s technical jury.

From September 9-16, any purchase at Dolce Neve comes with a complimentary Sherbeth Gelato Trio, with one mini scoop of each of the finalists: mascarpone, polenta cake, and orange liqueur; brown butter and pecan crumble; and mascarpone with cacao nibs infusion. Guests will cast their vote for their favorite flavor, and the most popular will represent Dolce Neve in the festival. 

We had a chance to try the final flavors and had a hard time picking a favorite. We enjoyed the texture contrast of the polenta cake with the creamy, boozy ice cream; the rich brown butter taste with the crunch of fresh pecans; and the subtle chocolate notes of the cacao nibs infusing the tangy mascarpone cream.  

Dolce Neve is a family-owned shop from brother and sister Marco and Francesca Silvestrini and Francesca’s fiancé, Leopoldo Ferrarese, which opened in January 2014. Their focus is on creating both traditional flavors (a fabulous organic pistachio and classics like stracciatella) and innovative flavors such as the ones mentioned above, using traditional Italian techniques and ingredients from local Texas farmers whenever possible.

After the trip to Italy, the Dolce Neve team will continue work on their Houston outlet, which should open in early 2017.