Petit Fours: a Sydney food blog


Petit Fours: a Sydney food blog


Petit Fours: a Sydney food blog

Saturday, 9 March 2013

RivaReno, Darlinghurst

A kind thank you to Alex Taylor of Maria Farmer Public Relations for inviting me to a tasting of the recently opened RivaReno gelaterie. The humble gelato found its origins in Rome so if it's anyone who knows their gelato, it's the Italians. For a while now, RivaReno, the brain child of an Italian lawyer and BBC journalist has been the pride and joy of the Italians and was called the best gelato of Italy in 2008 by the Golosarian Association.

That was until Australian branch owner Kieran Tosilini coaxed the owners after searching far and wide through Italy for a gelato system that met his fancy. The outfit is a very clean and modern with stainless steel, pristine whites and glass, albeit plain one with nothing particularly striking. 

It sad to see that the requisite fluorescent mountains of gelato studded with toppings aren't present with the reason being Italian gelateria in the past would always keep their gelato inside covered frozen containers and that they're trying to respect tradition. While that's a decent reason, it becomes a lot more reasonable when they go further to explain that it's easier to maintain the right temperature with the lids closed. That way the gelato is kept a little softer which makes it easier to taste the flavours that's unlikely to induce an uncomfortable brain freeze.

Pistacchio Bronte 
Their gelato authenticity is immediately apparent after a brief conversation with the staff. Most of their items are flown in from Italy, Sicilian lemons for example or foraged wild strawberries. They aren't taking any risks here and everything, from the churning process and the gelato ingredients to the structure of the place is focused to be as exact as possible.

Mango Heera
Their gelato flavours are brilliant, dare I say probably one of the best. They mention that there's no hydrogenated fats, preservatives, anti-oxidants and artificial colourings in their gelatos..There isn't a mind boggling collection of gelato flavours daily nor is there head-scratch inducing sort of zaniness but there's an almost unmatched clarity in flavours that's not unadulterated with sugar.

Morena gelato
Their sublime limone is true in flavour, not sweet because lemons aren't, but not cheek-puckeringly sour either. Sort of like the fragrant fruity lemon zest flavour being squeezed into the sorbet and not the flesh.

It takes a little American inspiration with New York, New York and Sweet Alabama gelatos and that's from one of the owner's wife being American. Special mention goes to that New York, New York; the balance of pure Canadian maple syrup and buttery pecans makes a deeply satisfying gelato.

Pink Grapefruit granita
Their pink grapefruit granita is similarly successful. Sort of like a slushie, they dilute the tartness of grapefruit a little to make it more palatable. 

Ciocolato extra Fondente gelato
I highly recommend to go in and experiment with their distinct chocolate gelato flavours. For me it's their Ciocolato extra fondente that takes my heart. It's not just a usually one dimensional bitter flavour that's present in a lot of dark gelatos. It has a thick, bold and intense cocoa flavour that only top notch Valrhona chocolate can produce. 

Bacio gelato
For others, maybe the Bacio, reminiscent of nutella, or the Alice (pronounced a-li-che) with it's glossy gianduja sauce drizzled over their creamy marscapone gelato that's right up your alley.

Bacio and Cioccolato extra fondente gelato in a cup
A small cup of gelato is 4.90 for one flavour so it's a fair price.

With Gelato Messina only a couple of blocks away and n2 being the current craze, RivaReno faces stiff gelato competition. It's a proven concept that's been around for years and if my visit was indicative of the future direction of Sydney's branch, it can certainly hold a 'cone' to any one of them.

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RivaReno Gelato on Urbanspoon


Those flavours sound amazing! I'm always up for some gelato :D

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No, we aren't the most amazing gastronomes or chefs. Heck, half our team doesn't even know how to cook... well. However, what we really love is eating. And lots of it. We enjoy that occasional freebie, filling up that craving for a midnight snack and finding a 20 in our pockets that we thought we never had, and using that as an excuse to go out eating. As we battle the ongoing war on uni student poverty, we'll bring you the most swoon worthy recounts of our latest foodie adventures.

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