Carpigiani announced the top three winners of its Chicago gelato challenge, held in Vernon Hills, Ill., on February 21.
The top three winners, and their winning flavors, are:
First place: Giuseppe Lollino of Vero Gelato in Franklin Park (IL) with the flavor “Tribute to Setteveli”. Description: chocolate gelato made with homemade hazelnut praline, a hazelnut cookie crunch and a dark chocolate ganache
Second place: Kathy Turek of The Knotted Cone in Appleton (WI) with the flavor “Pink Peaches & Cream”. Description: a blended peach, strawberry, and blood orange sorbet twisted with a cream gelato infused with Madagascar vanilla beans and fresh zested lemon peel
Third place: Maria Liliana Biondo of Ugogelato in Cincinnati (OH) with the flavor “Mandorland”. Description: a base made out of natural almond, toasted almond and bitter almond, 70 % Venezuelan chococolate, blood orange glaze, almond nougat and finishing with an orange zest spray
The Chicago gelato challenge is one of four North America regional gelato challenges to be held in 2023 as part of the Gelato Festival World Masters. Three winners from each of the regional challenges will advance to the North America semi-finals to be held in Los Angeles in September 2023. The Gelato Festival World Masters, sponsored by Carpigiani and Sigep – Italian Exhibition Group, is holding a four-year series of competitions to find the world’s best gelato. Over the 2022-2025 time period, a series of regional competitions will be held, with the final global competition to be held in 2025 in Italy.
The gelato creations are judged on the choice of ingredients used, technical structure, craftsmanship in creating the recipe and visual impact. At each competition, the gelati will be judged by a panel of esteemed judges. Judges for the North America challenge in Vernon Hills were:
- Tom O’Brien, Contributing Editor for Foodservice Equipment & Supplies magazine and Principal of O’Brien Culinary Communications
- Tony Priolo Owner of Piccolo Sogno restaurant and Nonnina in Chicago
- Giacomo Pettinari, Executive chef at Soho House Chicago
- Nicole Guini, Pastry chef at Adalina restaurant Chicago
- Juan Gutierrez, Corporate Pastry Chef at Lettuce Entertain You
The Gelato Festival debuted in Florence, Italy, in 2010, and soon expanded throughout Italy and the rest of Europe. The first North American challenge was held Colorado in 2017. After more than 80 regional festivals and more than 3,500 gelato artisans participating, the winner of the most recent Gelato Festival was Ádám Fazekas of Budapest, Hungary, with his Frutta di Pistacchio (Pistachio Fruit) gelato in 2021.
Other contestants in the North America challenge were:
·Rachel Nally of Local Apple Cart in Fort Wayne (IN) with the flavor “Electric Works”;
·Mary Stanley of The Turtle Gelateria in Brownwood (TX) with the flavor “Southern Banana Pudding”;
·Antonella Loiacono of Undici Gelato & Espresso Bar in Itasca (IL) with the flavor “Cookie Dough”;
·Lauren Brock of Butterfat Gelato in Pittsburgh (PA) with the flavor “Carrot Cake”;
·Micheal Meranda of Gelato D'Oro in Countryside (IL) with the flavor “Sea Salt Caramel Fudge Brownie Gelato”;
·Samantha Santiago Torres of The Cage in Chicago (IL) with the flavor “Violet Tonka Bean Gelato”;
·Mirko Di Patrizi of Gelato Go in Miami (FL) with the flavor “Passione Nera”;
·Ellen Coatney of Fifth Shop in Madison (WI) with the flavor “Burnt sugar passion”.
News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by WTWH Media LLC.