“Your cousin owns a gelato shop??!! Are you kidding me??? Of course I want to go!”, I shrieked (without hugging her too tightly) when Deborah invited me to Pinguino Giallo (Yellow Penguin) Gelateria in Gardone Riviera, a charming town on the western side of Lake Garda.
Owned by Deborah’s Aunt Silvia for the past 25 years and now run by her daughter Roberta, Pinguino Giallo makes homemade artisanal ice cream daily and several times a day at that. The brand new gelato machine is constantly humming in the back of the shop.
Roberta uses fresh, high quality natural and organic ingredients and from as many local producers as possible – milk, cream, vanilla beans, eggs and fruit. Everything is carefully weighed, measured and added to the gelato machine which mixes and freezes and out comes the most amazing gelato.
With a choice of 10-15 incredible flavors made daily, I had to start somewhere. Since Frutti di Bosca (Wild Berry) was coming out of the machine, I had my spoon ready. Next was Strawberry (Fragole), Pistachio, Fior di Latte and Black Cherry (Amarena). A special flavor is Cedro, made from the fruit resembling a large lemon grown in the Lake Garda region. All in all, I tried seven different flavors and had fulfilled a childhood dream of being able to eat as much ice cream as I wanted.
Right next door is Pinguino Giallo Bar (also owned the family) with an espresso machine going nonstop, panini and a full array of spirits and local wines.
And with free internet, there’s really no need to leave…ever.