Tag Archives: gelato

Cool, creamy and delicious lite: Gelato Festival, Take 2

Last year, I made a solo trip from the temporary housing residence hotel in Motta over to Cefalu for the International Sherbeth Festival.

The article linked above explains that ‘sherbet’ comes from the Arabic word for the concoctions that have evolved into sorbet and gelato. The festival creates five pockets of booths within the center of Cefalu, include two points on the sea. This was the sixth year of the festival and it was going strong, including extras such as “Gelato University” – perhaps a venue of research for blossoming ice cream makers out there?

The flavors, textures, and high quality ingredients of these gelato samples were simply amazing. With a few bites, I was tempted to forgo lesser quality frozen products for life. (Yes, I have since come to my senses.) The hot sticky air of charming Cefalu was a great complement to the cool, creamy deliciousness of the gelato.

Buon sherbeth!

And to all a buona notte!

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Filed under 5-100, Food. Cibo.

Cool, creamy, and delicious.

As soon as I read the words “Gelato Festival” or “Sherbeth Festival” in The Signature, I knew I would be going to Cefalù this weekend. Cefalù is a city at the base of a rocky cliff on Sicily’s northern shore. It is about 60 km east of Palermo and roughly two hours from Catania. I drove it in an hour and forty-five minutes because I started from our hotel in Motta Sant’Anastasia, which is the small town near Sigonella.

I choose to attend the festival on Sunday, knowing I may miss some of the excitement, but I would also miss most of the crowds. With heat and humidity holding steady during the peak daytime hours when I planned to go, I opted for thinner crowds. No worries, I still had sweat droplets running down the backs of my legs before the day was out.

Another benefit to a smaller crowd was a better opportunity to find parking. I was using my GPS to direct me, so I could estimate the distance I would have to walk. I passed by a spot 2.2km from the center, just a little much to demand from myself for gelato. Then there was a great spot at 1.1 km, which is completely reasonable, but I decided to cruise the scene first. I saw the pink and white banners lining the streets of the city center as I passed. I followed the road up the hill with my stomach growling, and parked in the first free spot I could find.

There were some opportunities for paid parking closer to the center, although the street spaces were few and far between and even the parking lots I saw were very full. I grew up in a small town and although I have lived in cities most of my adult life, I still have a tough time paying for parking when a short walk would save several dollars, or euro in this instance. I found my free spot and trekked down the hill to enter the “centro” (city center). Here, the festival wound its way through cobblestone streets that buzzed with energy under the “domani” demeanor of a beach town.

Entrance to the “Sherbeth Festival Due mila undici (2011)”

Festiavl Internazionale del Gelato Artigianale.

Great organization and lay-out. I loved the decor and media of this event.

I entered at B, walked up to C and around to D, then back to B before heading down to A. The majority of the tasting stands were in between B and A, so I basically got my city tour first.

The biglietto (ticket), which reads “To not want gelato from another Sherbeth (festival) would be a shame (literally a sin).” (my translation). “Una coppetta” is a cup and is larger in size than “un conetto,” which is a tiny cone with gelato spread onto it. “Tagliando” means coupon.

You may have noticed that one conetto ticket is already gone! That is because I started with this delightful treat.

From Libya.

Nothing better for a growling tummy.

The fast melting gelato is proof that it was still quite hot.

Along the festival route, I passed by the Piazza del Duomo, scoped out the Duomo’s exterior (look for these shots in an upcoming post), and saw a display of old-fashioned gelato makers.

Next up, ginger and cardamom, from South Africa.

After this, I toured the booths to search out my final selections. The choices were sure to be difficult to make with these offerings.

This was my second favorite gelato, the texture of the fig really came through.

Old-fashioned gelato-making apparatus display as part of the festival.

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The thunder rolls…

5-100

  1. Morning yoga stretched me out.
  2. Mountain scenery en route to Cefalù was gorgeous. I’m falling more and more in love with Sicily.
  3. Cefalù was amazing!
  4. Limone e basilico gelato (lemon and basil). Mmmm!
  5. Skyping with my brother Jim and my friend Anisette. Anisette is the friend who is visiting in one month!

It’s my first Sicilian thunderstorm and I love it! This morning started out especially sticky and humid. Clouds blocked out the morning sunshine and shaded my drive to the library. While I was inside, the clouds gathered and were menacing as I emerged. The wind picked up as I headed home for lunch. Just now, as I stirred my soup, the thunder began. Sand, dust, and ash swirl as the thunder rolls back and forth across the sky. We have about 56 wet days a year, which means I get to enjoy the novelty of each one. Check it out.

 

The most ominous sky I have seen here yet. I know what you’re thinking. “THAT is ominous?” Please remember the constant sunshine has pleasantly displaced memories of other weather patterns from my consciousness.

Look at the neighbor’s willow swirling around and the palm tree on the other side of the house is all side-ponytail right now.

The metallic windsock is about to fly away!

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Gelato in Nicolosi

Here we go, first a classy crisp sign welcomed us in from the hot dusty road.

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Mmmmmm, look at all the gelato offerings!

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There are so many options! Which shall I have? Wait a second. Are those really cannoli stuffed with gelato?

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Oh goodness. Those ARE cannoli stuffed with gelato, AND the ends are dipped in chocolate. Wow.

Hmmm, what to do…look at all those gelato flavors.

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That bright pink one in the back row looks popular. Fruta di bosca? Sounds great, with a scoop of cannella of course.

Here it is!

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A Ferrogosto mosaic for Nicolosi. 2011.

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Sicilian horsecart. (Mentioned with pride in “Mafioso.”)

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Nicolosi charm, tasty gelato, and plans to return for gelato-stuffed cannoli leave Jill a happy woman.

Ciao!

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Roam (not Rome; well, at least not yet).

5-100

  1. Delicious pastry, perfectly light, airy, and flaky layers, studded on top with crystals of sweet sugar, and filled with a perfectly bittersweet chocolate. Each bite was a mini-explosion of sugar bomb in my mouth. Although I typically favor a savory breakfast, this was an awesome experience.
  2. Ferragosto parade (started around 8 am to beat the heat; passed our hotel around 9am) – the holiday’s official date is August 15th, but it is really a month of holiday and festivals and celebrations in Italy. The beaches are packed, many shops are closed, and there is a festive atmosphere in the air!
  3.  Nicolosi! Nicolosi! Nicolosi! – this door to Mt. Etna is an adorable small town that charmed me completely.
  4. Gelato! I have eaten my favorite gelato of the trip so far. It was from Gran Moritz Gelateria, and I mixed “canella” (cinammon) and “fruta di bosca” (fruit of the “forest,” aka mixed berry). Mmmm, yummy! (See pictures in next post.) This is the first time I saw soy gelato offered. I did not choose it this time, but may have to try it for research purposes in the future.
  5. Dinner with friends. Tonight our friends from orientation hosted us for a delicious dinner, starring homemade eggplant parmigiana! It was delicious and we had fun meeting their children and visiting.

Roam if you want to/Roam around the world…” was playing at the gym today during my workout and I was singing along happily, still entranced by my new adventure. Later in the day, as I was driving, it dawned on me that this is my home for the next three years. Three years. Home. I spent three of the most challenging and fun years of my life in law school and this is going to last three years, too. I will have three years to take on the challenges here; three years to find out how I fit into Sicily.

 

Here are some pictures of the Ferrogosto Parade, Dave took these photos from our balcony. Because they carried the float (rather than hauling it by horse or car), they paused every 1/4 – 1/2 block and played music, visited with each other or visited with the neighbors who came down from their homes.

Look at the detail on the float – real flowers on top!

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