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Texture of good gelato?

I live in the hinterlands and have only had gelato from the supermarket. Is it supposed to have ice crystals in it?

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  1. Nope. In the culinary Mecca that is Chandler, AZ I give demerits to ice-crystal pocked gelato. Though I do manage to choke it down...

    1. I believe that good gelato should be made not more than a few hours before you consume it.

        1. re: IamJacksBrain

          Yep. Super, duper creamy. Creamier than ice cream.

        2. Almost greasy on the tongue, but with an astonishing clarity of flavor. It's borderline counterintuitive at its best: how can something that feels this rich be this flavor-forward?

          The absolute best I've ever had was in "American bars" in small towns in southern Italy. The worst was right in front of the Leaning Tower of Pisa. The stuff in Old Town Pasadena is somewhere in between.

          1. Most freezers are too cold for gelato by about 5-10 degrees. Take your gelato out of the freezer and let it warm up a little. The icy texture might just be because you're eating it when it's too cold.

            I make my own and when it's just out of the freezer it feels too crystalline, but a few degrees warmer and it becomes smooth and creamy.

            1. Gelato has to be eaten soon after it is made.

              Hard to keep and transport, loses that creamy, rich and smooth texture that sets it apart from ice cream, yogurt and sorbet.

              Sort of like how you really can't "keep" Slurpee in the freezer, you really can't "keep" gelato in a freezer carton ...

              2 Replies
              1. re: ipsedixit

                Well, I guess this is why the small-town "American bar" gelato was so good: yes, it was all made from commercial mixes, but it was made fresh on the premises every day - in fact, once or twice we had to wait for it!

                1. re: Will Owen

                  Concur.

                  This sort of makes me think that one of the reasons Hawai'ian shave ice is so much better on the islands is the high turnover. But who knows ...

              2. The best gelato I've had is from gelaterias around town. The texture should be slightly soft, with a lush, silky mouthfeel. Ice crystals should not exist anywhere. I've tried getting gelato from supermarkets and was just disappointed.