AUSTIN, TX—Austinites will get a little taste of Italy when Dolce Neve—a new traditional Italian gelato shop—opens its doors in early December. Using original recipes from their homeland and machinery from their native region, three Italians who now call the Capital City home make delicious, pure gelato fresh onsite daily. At Dolce Neve, what you see is what you get—locally-sourced seasonal ingredients, organic fresh milk from a local dairy, and absolutely no artificial flavorings, preservatives, or thickeners. It’s all about how true Italian gelato should look, feel, and taste.
At this tiny new spot nestled along ultra-cool bustling S. 1st Street, gelato is made from scratch using a mixing and freezing technique called “mantecazione verticale” rather than an industrial method. It takes a little longer, but the vertical batch freezer (this particular one was invented in the 1930’s) incorporates air in a natural way, which creates a creamier consistency. Every morning seasonal fruit, water, and sugar are combined, and every afternoon, those mixtures are put in the batch freezer to make extremely fresh gelato.
This trio’s love for gelato is how it all got started. Francesca and her brother Marco spent a great deal of time during their formative years at their farmhouse in the Marche region of Central Italy, where they learned from their parents and grandparents about food—harvesting crops, cooking dinner, shopping at the farmers’ market, and making wine. They cultivated an understanding for rich traditions and processes and a palette for fresh products. While living in America, they discovered they couldn’t find real Italian gelato—the kind they grew up craving and savoring—and decided to fill that void. They reached out to Francesca’s boyfriend, Leo, who was working in Milan at the time, and he wholeheartedly joined in. Francesca trained at Carpigiani Gelato University; refined her skills at Pisa’s Gelateria De’ Coltelli, one of the most famous gelato shops in Italy; and placed sixth in the Sherbeth Festival, a competition among the top 40 gelato masters in the world. The trio set their sights on Austin, where they felt their drive to produce a healthy, all-natural gelato would flourish and be appreciated.
Every day Dolce Neve features about 20 different flavors—from the traditional Italian favorites such as hazelnut, pistachio, chocolate, and stracciatella to the creative combinations made from seasonal local products. The trio works with John Lash of Farm to Table to find the freshest ingredients, and Mill-King Market & Creamery in McGregor provides the milk. Many of the gelato offerings are vegan and made with rice milk instead of soy milk. In addition to gelato on cones and in cups, there’s a smattering of gelato sandwiches, granitas, frozen Italian desserts, and gelato on a stick treats. Superior coffee and espresso beans are sourced from artisan roasters, and the end products boast a superior flavor.
Patrons can appreciate the simplicity of it all—from the all-natural gelato itself (“Dolce Neve” means “sweet snow” and refers to the original treat made from snow, honey, and fruit) to the Italian farmhouse–style space designed by Dick Clark and made with upcycled flooring and furniture. Dolce Neve is the real deal, right here in Austin.
Dolce Neve, located at 1713 S. 1st Street, Austin, TX, 78704, will be open Mon thru Fri11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sat & Sun 11 a.m. to midnight. For more information, call 512-804-5568 or go to dolcenevegelato.com.
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