Over 1000 guests were surprised and delighted by the Gelato in the Square event at Gelato Village, Leicester this weekend.
The two day event saw ten of the world’s leading gelato chefs converge on Leicester city centre to create an unforgettable palatte of flavours and gelato experiences. From New York, Milan and London these artisan masters came to Leicester. They created fresh gelato at the in-store Laboratory each morning and exclusively used natural, seasonal and high quality produce.
Customers were treated to Memories of a Tortello – inspired by the butter-fried sage used to coat tortelli pasta – and Year after Year which examined the impact that time and patience has on the development of ingredients like Scotch whisky and chocolate.
Over 20 events, many of them free, were held at the St Martin’s Square gelateria and in partner venues around the city, with most of the tastings and workshop being free to participate in. They all examined the festival’s theme; “Gelato, a unique flavour journey”. The wild and wacky programme offered unique gastronomic experiences to all who participated, from a 5 course wine pairing tasting menu at the nationally renowned Delilah Fine Foods to tracing the role and impact of different yeasts in a delicious collaborative tasting by microbusinesses Planet Leicester Bakers and Anstey Ale Brewery.
The event closed with an award ceremony celebrating the achievements of the Maestri Gelatieri. Food writers Jan Egan, Tim Burke and Laura Hadland had the enviable task of judging each of the gelati, sorbetti and granite in terms of their flavour, balance, texture, structure and creativity, while a public vote running throughout the festival determined the people’s champion. The overall winner was Stefano Guizzetti of Ciacco in Milan. His flavour ‘Fiery Blackness’ was deemed to provide the greatest flavour journey – with bitter cocoa melding into spiced rum notes, which in turn gave way to a subtle but distinct fire from Trinidad Scorpion chilli.
The public favoured the unusual and complex gelato on offer the most too, voting Gianfrancesco Cutelli of De ‘Coltelli as their winner. His Green Variations sorbetto was a dairy-free creation which blended high quality Sicilian pistachio with semi-candied capers and oregano for a fusion of tastes including sweet, salty and aromatic.
“We are pleased that Leicester was as excited about this event as we were!” said Gelato Village co-owner Daniele Taverna. “We wanted to help people understand what makes authentic gelato so special and it was our pleasure to be able to bring our colleagues from around the globe to do that.”