Gelato break at Cara Mia, Robinsons Galleria

It seems that no matter the weather, frozen treats are a sure bet. Whether your find yourself in the midst of a sweltering summer or wet monsoon season, you can always take comfort in something cold and sweet.

Take gelato, for example.

This dessert which originated from Italy has become a mainstay in the Pinoy dessert scene.  And why shouldn’t it?  Made with a base of milk, gelato uses a lot less cream than ice cream, resulting in a denser and creamier dessert.

Premium gelato brand Cara Mia (“my dear” in Italian) got its start when  Fr. Gianluigi Colombo, the Salesian Priest who started Amici di Don Bosco in Makati started selling gelato in one of the sections of the cafeteria style restaurant when it opened in 2001, in effect making it among the first to offer this kind of dessert to Pinoys.

Years later, Cara Mia was spun off into a separate brand with its own stores all over the metro, such as the kiosk in Robinsons Galleria that my son and I visited when we were in the mood for dessert after our steak lunch.

We gave up trying to walk off the calories and just opted to sit down at the kiosk and relax with our chosen cup of gelato.

Cara Mia, Robinsons Galleria

Cara Mia, Robinsons Galleria

Cara Mia, Robinsons Galleria

Cara Mia, Robinsons Galleria

I got myself a Coffee Mudslide (Php95), a sweet treat fortified by espresso shots incorporated in the gelato.

Cara Mia, Robinsons Galleria

Cara Mia, Robinsons Galleria

My son got a cup of Cookies and Cream (Php95), rich vanilla gelato interspersed with Oreo crumbs, definitely one of his favorites!

Cara Mia, Robinsons Galleria

Cara Mia, Robinsons Galleria

What a lovely end to meal and a way for mom-and-son to spend some quiet time together!

Cara Mia, Robinsons Galleria

This Cara Mia branch is located at Level 2 Robinsons Galleria, Ortigas Center, Quezon City.

Other branches include: Ayala Malls Feliz, Greenhills, Don Bosco, Tomas Morato, Ayala Triangle, Alabang Town Center, Robinsons Manila, Estancia Mall, Trinoma, Fairview Terraces, SM Megamall, SM Fairview, Lucky Chinatown Mall, Greenhills Promenade, Festival Mall, Gateway Mall, Venice Grand Mall and Uptown Bonifacio

Cara Mia products can also be enjoyed inside Amici stores such as UP Ayala Technohub, SM Mega Atrium, SM North EDSA The Block and Katipunan Avenue.

Cara Mia Cakes & Gelato Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other dessert shops in the metro:

Frozen treats at Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Just when we Easterners thought gelato treats are way above our budget or inaccessible to us, a Fiorgelato scooping station sets up shop right in our turf.

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Gelato is a type of frozen dessert that originated in Italy. Made with a base of milk, gelato uses a lot less cream than ice cream, resulting in a denser and creamier dessert.

Fiorgelato produces several gelato flavors that make use of the finest ingredients such as chocolates, fresh fruits and imported Italian flavorings.

Together with my fellow foodies from #WeLoveToEatPH and #SaanSaPH, I visited the newly opened Fiorgelato scooping station at Sta. Lucia East Grand Mall.

The store stocks gelato variants that include: pistachio, pragola (strawberry), salted caramel, choco nut fudge, biscotti (cookies ‘n cream), ube (yam), menta (mint) and fior de panna (vanilla).

These flavors are mixed and matched, topped with goodies and made into yummy gelato-based treats, which, thanks to an ongoing rainy season promo, are currently available at discounted rates.

Fiorgelato, Sant Lucia East

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Check them out:

Regular Cup (Php60 from Php70).

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Banana Split (Php110 from Php120).

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Ice Cream Blend (Php110 from Php140).

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

And the soon-to-be-launched Revel Bar ala Mode (no price yet).

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Just imagine what other gelato treats await us! Personally, I would really love it if Fiorgelato adds chocolate chips and chopped nuts among its toppings.

Many thanks to Oliver and the staff of Fiorgelato Sta. Lucia for having us!

Fiorgelato, Sta Lucia East

Fiorgelato, Sant Lucia East

This Fiorgelato kiosk is located at Second Floor, Building 3 (in front of the department store), Sta. Lucia East Grand Mall, Felix Avenue corner Marcos Highway, San Isidro, Cainta.

Other kiosks are located at:

  • Medical City, Ugong, Pasig
  • Rustan’s Makati, Glorietta Complex, Makati
  • Ayala Malls Circuit, Olympia, Makati
  • Salcedo Village, Makati
  • Sampaloc, Manila
  • Fairview, Quezon City
  • Robinsons Place Manila, Ermita, Manila
  • Fisher Mall Malabon, Longos, Malabon City

Fiorgelato Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with my fellow foodies, I attended a foodie meetup held here. Food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare and were not paid for by the attendees, including myself.

Check out my reviews of other dessert shops in the metro:

Gelato Treat at Morelli’s, Powerplant Mall

We Pinoys love sweets, and with a tropical climate such as ours, we won’t say no to frozen treats even in December.

While ice cream is more prevalent, gelato desserts are also growing in popularity in the country.

Gelato is a frozen dessert which originated in Italy. It has a much creamier and silkier texture than ice cream, given its increased use of milk rather than cream compared to ice cream. Gelato also does not make use of eggs, unlike ice cream, and is usually served using a small spade instead of a scoop.

That’s what I treated my family to over the holidays. After Christmas lunch at nearby Fireside by Kettle in Rockwell, we headed straight to Morelli’s Gelato for dessert. (Thanks to Jen of SandUnderMyFeet.com for sharing her GCs!)

The Morelli’s gelato brand started in Scotland in 1907 when father-and-son Giuseppe and Mario started selling the ice cream prevalent in their native Italy. The brand expanded to UK in 1932, and then went on to establish its presence in other countries, where its gelato offerings are made fresh everyday using natural ingredients.

My kids, mother-in-law and I enjoyed our scoops of truffle, chocolate, pistachio and vanilla gelato which served as a great cap to our Christmas lunch.

Morelli’s Rockwell

Morelli’s Rockwell

Morelli’s Rockwell

This Morelli’s Gelato branch is located at Second Floor, Power Plant Mall, Rockwell, Makati City. Another branch is located at Level 3, East Wing, Shangri-La Plaza, Ortigas, Mandaluyong City.

Morelli's Gelato Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other dessert places:

Ice cream indulgence at Indulge, Novotel Manila Araneta

Novotel Manila Araneta is located in the middle of the hustle and bustle of Cubao.

Despite this busy location, it offers its guests and visitors a welcoming haven to relax and rest for a bit.

Take for example its dessert bar Indulge.

Situated at the hotel’s lobby, Indulge can be a dessert stopover on the way to one’s hotel room, or before going out of the hotel.

It offers a variety of sweets – from premium ice cream and gelatos, shakes and floats to bread and cookies – that can serve as a yummy cap to a meal or as a snack treat to sate one’s sweet cravings in between meals.

Take for example the avocado ice cream I recently treated myself to. Imaginatively named Green with Envy, it is rich, creamy and not too sweet, with some crunch to it thanks to sprinklings of chocolate chips.

I would definitely welcome another opportunity to try its other offerings, particularly its spiked ice creams.

Indulge is located at the lobby of Novotel Manila Araneta Center, General Aguinaldo Avenue, Araneta Center, Cubao, Quezon City.

Indulge Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other dessert places:

Dessert stopover at Gelato Lab, Tomas Morato

Gelato is ice cream made in the Italian style.

Some trace its origins to Bernardo Buontalenti, an inventor in the service of the Medicis in Florence during the Renaissance era, as a by-product of his innovations in ice conservation.

Today, gelato has spread to the most parts of the world. In the Philippines, for example, it offers people some cool respite from the heat and humidity. It also has a slightly warmer serving temperature than regular ice cream which enables it to hold well in the country’s tropical weather and allows it to have a softer yet denser texture.

Tucked inside the Picnic Grounds of Elements Hall along Scout Rallos Street in the foodie-friendly Tomas Morato area is Gelato Lab. It offers all-natural hand-crafted gelato made with high quality ingredients. To maintain the freshness of its gelato, each flavor is churned in small batches.

My daughter #ExhibitA and I decided to stopover this dessert station on our way home from a nearby bar. The call of the sweet gelato treats was just too strong!

Gelato Lab, Tomas Morato

Gelato Lab, Tomas Morato

Gelato Lab, Tomas Morato

I got myself a cup of the Dark Chocolate gelato (a regular flavor hence priced at Php100/cup | Php360/pint | Php740/tub). #ExhibitA, on the other hand got a cup of Cookie Dough gelato (a premium flavor hence priced at Php120/cup | Php400/pint | Php840/tub).

Gelato Lab, Tomas Morato

Gelato Lab, Tomas Morato

Both flavors are sinfully yummy and well worth the short side trip. 🙂

Gelato Lab is located at the Picnic Grounds, 2nd Floor Elements Hall, 27 Scout Rallos Street, Bgy. Laging Handa, Quezon City. For queries, call +63 2 4138008 or email gelatolabph@gmail.com.

Did you know you can serve Gelato Lab’s treats in your next party? For Php9,000, you can have a Gelato Lab scooping station that will give out 120 cups of gelato. This package already includes the freezer, cups, spoons and paper napkins, and one server. Your guests will be able to choose from 3 regular flavors (or you can upgrade to premium flavors for an additional Php400/flavor). For additional 20 cups of regular flavor gelato, pay Php1,300 while for additional 20 cups premium flavor gelato, pay Php1,500.

Gelato Lab’s regular flavors include: Banoffee, Black Sesame, Caramel Popcorn, Cashew, Coffee Straciatella, Custaroon, Dark Chocolate, Earl Grey, Latter Macchiato, Leche Flan, Mango Pudding, Milo Dinosaur, Oreo Cheesecake, Sea Salt Caramel, Snickers, Thai Milk Tea, Ube and Vanilla Bean.

Its premium flavors, on the other hand, include: Baileys Irish Cream, Cookie Dough, Jack Daniels Whiskey, Maltesers, Macha Choco Chip, Mochacchino, Pina Colada Sorbet, Pistachio, Rum Raisin, Strawberry and Tiramisu.

Gelato Lab Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Italian lunch at Amici, Ayala Triangle

After taking care of my morning errands in Makati around lunchtime, I was faced with the challenge of finding somewhere to eat. Fortunately, I espied the branch of Amici among the eateries inside the Ayala Triangle Gardens.

Amici started out as a canteen that caters to the employees of the Don Bosco Printing Press. At that time, it was called Amici di Don Bosco (Friends of Don Bosco). Its menu then consisted of coffee and gelato which later expanded to include wood-fire oven baked pizzas and homemade pastas. The reputation of this restaurant serving tasty and authentic Italian food prepared by priests grew and attracted more and more customers. Today, Amici has 9 branches in Metro Manila, a recognized institution when it comes to authentic Italian pizza, pasta and gelato.

For my lunch today, I opted to munch on two flavors I have been craving for: truffle pasta and chocolate.

Linguine al Prosciutto e Tartufo (Php370)

One of Amici’s best-sellers, this is the resto’s version of a truffle pasta. Linguini pasta are cooked al dente then drenched in a masterful blend of prosciutto, truffle oil, porcini and shitake mushrooms. The smell of truffle oil may be overpowering to some but I didn’t mind it one bit. I found the serving portion a bit too large so I left half to take home to my daughter #ExhibitA; Amici’s dishes are #BestWhenShared anyway.

Turtle Pie Gelato (Php95 per scoop) by Cara Mia

Rich dark chocolate with drizzles of caramel and studded with pecans. I found the scoop a bit small but, well, as a wise woman once told me, quality is never cheap. I treat getting myself a gelato at Amici as a sort of indulgence or reward for myself.

The place is clean and well-lit and has a busy and energetic vibe given the lunchtime crowd. That said, I found the service very warm and accommodating: I was seated very quickly, and given garlic bread to munch on while waiting for my order.  Also, my water was refilled without my having to request for it and my request to have half of my pasta wrapped for takeout was immediately done.

This Amici branch is located at Ayala Triangle Gardens, Salcedo Village, Makati City and is open weekdays from 10am to 10pm and weekends from 12nn to 8pm.  For reservations and inquiries, call + 63 2 6216111 or +63 977 4596625.

Other branches are located at:

  • Don Bosco School, A. Arnaiz Avenue, San Lorenzo, Makati City (Tel: +63 2 8221111, +63 916 9227972 or +63 906 1234456)
  • Second Floor, Alabang Town Center, Alabang, Muntinlupa City (Tel: +63 2 4039373, +63 917 8946897 or +63 917 8218988)
  • Third Floor, Mega Atrium, SM Megamall, Ortigas, Mandaluyong City (Tel: +63 2 6361340, +63 2 6361341, + 63 947 2998417 or +63 906 8463051)
  • Ground Floor, 101 Missouri Square, Missouri Corner Connecticut Street, Greenhills, San Juan City (Tel: +63 2 724 4804, +63 2 724 4806, +63 936 7190592, or +63 908 9901506)
  • Bellagio Square, Tomas MoratoAvenue, Laging Handa, Quezon City (Tel: +63 2 3766458, +63 915 6272060 or +63 905 1958506)
  • Ground Floor, The Block, SM City North EDSA, Bago Bantay, Quezon City (Tel: +63 2 709 5545, +63 906 7243019 or +63 916 7890754)
  • Ground Floor, UP Ayala Technohub, Commonwealth Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City (Tel: +63 2 709 0999, +63 995 1693154 or +63 936 2935257)
  • Ground Floor, The Oracle Hotel & Residences, 317 Katipunan Avenue, Loyola Heights, Quezon City (Tel: +63 956 6031048 or +63 935 4402663)

Amici Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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