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Jan 17, 2005 08:09 PM

Best Gelato In Bay Area

  • c

What do readers believe to be the best tasting gelato in
the Bay Area?

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  1. The three I've tried are:

    Mondo Gelato (Berkeley)
    Ciao Bella Gelato (Ferry Building)
    Tango Gelato (Fillmore Street in SF)

    Personally, I love Tango Gelato. My friends generally agree that if you want something rich (anything chocolate, coffee, almond, mascarpone), this place beats the other two HANDS DOWN. Everything is made on the premises and is presented in huge, fluffy, creamy mounds. It's a beautiful thing. However, their tiramisu flavor was off when I tried it just this Friday. The other flavors were phenomenal, including: almond delight, chocolate crunch, mint chip, plain chocolate or vanilla (I can't remember the names exactly, but something like that).

    Ciao Bella is good if you want gelato that's fruity. They have a very unique Cabernet flavor, and their other fruit flavors are very refreshing. Great if you want more of a sherbert.

    Mondo Gelato has more flavors than the other two, but I wouldn't say it's particularly impressive in terms of taste. They have so many flavors that it's really hit and miss.

    The staff at all three are happy to let you try a lot of samples before you decide, as long as you're not holding up the line when they're really busy.

    PS. Gelato Classico, which is sold at a lot of cafes in the city, is NOT what I would call gourmet gelato. Compare it to getting Dreyers at the grocery store for a quick ice cream fix. It's not bad, but it's not great.

    2 Replies
    1. re: nooodles
      Robert Lauriston

      Mondo Gelato is now called Naia. No change in style, just some business thing.

      There's another Tango Gelato on Fruitvale in Oakland.

      FWIW Ciao Bella is a national brand.

      1. re: Robert Lauriston

        they closed the one on fruitvale but their gelato can be found at Ill Massimo, market @ embarcadero. Check TG's web page for direcions

    2. e
      emily scatone

      I especially like the hazelnut flavor gelato at the Tango Gelato. It is delicious. I have also tried the Gelato Classico on Parnassus and like their chocalate flavors.

      1. I second Emily's recommendation of Tango Gelato on Fillmore Street in SF. Although they bill themselves as Italian/Argentinian style gelato, the quality they offer comes very close to what I had in Italy this past May.

        1. r
          Robert Lauriston

          I don't think anything's changed in the last six months:


          1 Reply
          1. re: Robert Lauriston
            Robert Lauriston

            Oh, wait, one thing has changed: Sketch in Berkeley. Whether strictly speaking it's gelato is debatable, but the flavors are spectacular.

            Right across the street is O Chame, which makes a remarkable balsamic caramel gelato.