Il Gelato is a brand spanking new gelato shop located in Sinsa. The store is owned by Italian Michele Cavallaro and his Korean partner Jihyun Baik. They met while training at Gelato University in Italy and set about bringing real gelato to Seoul. While Seoul is riddled with ice cream shops, this one is the closest you will get to the traditional gelato you will find in Italy. The store has only been open a few short weeks, but it’s already proving to be a big hit with the locals. I sadly couldn’t make it to their grand opening, but finally got around to taking them up on their invitation yesterday.
The sleek white shop is located in Sinsa just off of Garosugil. While the shop has no inside seating, there is lovely outdoor seating area for those wanting to sit outside and enjoy the sun, and a rather large sun blocker for those that don’t.
There are about 20 flavours available in store, each freshly made every 2 days with real fresh ingredients, there are no mixes or syrups at this store. You can get your gelato in a cup or a cone, one scoop is 4,000. 2 scoops are 5,000 and three scoops are 6,500. We sampled about a dozen different options before making our final choices.
One of the standout flavours for me was the Caffe Bianco, a rich and milky coffee which was pure heaven, they also have a Cappuccino flavour for those who like a stronger coffee kick.
My usual favourite in Italy is always the Nutella, so I couldn’t resist the Bacio which was chocolate gelato with pieces of hazelnut. But they also have Nocciolato which is Hazelnut gelato studded with pieces of chocolate, it was nice to see how the two compared to each other, they were so different despite having the same ingredients.
As well as serving the traditional flavours. Il Gelato also has a few special varieties of more inventive flavours made using Korean ingredients. My other favourite of the day turned out to be the Riso Giacomo, a rice based gelato, which was creamy, lemony and had little pieces of toasted rice strewn throughout. It was wonderful and a real mesh of flavours. Also not to be missed is the new flavour Cheonhyehyang, a special type of orange fruit from Jeju island. It had the perfect balance of sweet and sour, and was incredibly refreshing.
Il Gelato is located at 61 Nonhyunro 175gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul. To get there take a train to Sinsa station (line 3) and come out of exit 8. Walk straight for 3 blocks until you see Tous Les Jours then take the left directly after it. Keep walking straight until you reach the main Garosugil street then turn right. Keep walking along Garosugil until you reach the alleyway between Forever 21 & Aland. Walk down that street and you will see Il Gelato ahead of you on the right hand side. For more information you can call them on 010-5496-2309, or check out their facebook page.