The highlight of my Rome trip was the gelato. A massive few scoops of mixed flavours was a welcome break after long hours of walking in the sweltering heat. Italian gelato or ice cream is famous worldwide. Apparently Italians are credited to perfect the art of ice cream making, way back in the 17th Century. The famous traveller Marco Polo is believed to have imported the secret of water ice from China where he travelled in the 13th Century. The earliest documentation of modern refrigeration that we know of is in mid 19th Century. Before that, ice cream making would have been quite a laborious process especially in summer weather.
We found either a large or smallish gelateria in every corner, near every piazza and all along the river Tiber. The glass cases full of tubs of different flavours and the colours started calling me ‘try me’. The display itself is so attractive that you simply can’t resist. A strawberry flavour will have the fruit displayed on top and so on. Each shop has its own speciality flavours other than the usual “cioccolato” (chocolate), “vaniglia” (vanilla) and “fragola” (strawberry). There were other sumptuous flavours like Hazelnut ‘nocciole’ and raspberry ‘lampone’. Each flavour is so well-balanced that even if you mix presumed odd flavours, they are just perfect.