A relationship with ice cream is always a complicated one. First there is the chase, playing hard to get because you started the Dukan diet and went to the gym today. Finally you give in to the temptation, just for a taste. But then, just like that ex partner that you know is bad for you but just can't seem to let go, once you’ve had a taste of the familiar forbidden goodness you can’t stop until you’ve got a satisfied craving and a guilty conscience.
Now take that lustful desire you have for normal supermarket ice cream and multiply it by about seven million. Introducing Giapo, Auckland’s most popular ‘haute ice cream’ and winner of Cuisine’s best artisan experience award. Giapo offers a range of unique flavoured ice creams ($7) that will have you perplexed before you taste them, (rock melon spaghetti on sheep yoghurt or chocolate and blue cheese anyone?) and in awe after you polish off a large portion (or four). The genius behind Giapo, Gianpaolo Graziolo, is constantly working on new flavours and new presentation ideas, and everything is made in house and sold witihin the day. The parlour is cosy, and always busy, tucked into a block of shops near the Civic. The place is so popular that the queue always extends past the door, but the staff are good at keeping the customers moving so you won’t wait for long. Their tiramisu flavour is famously good, and served in a deluxe cone, which is made with real chocolate and gold dust and is almost as delicious as the ice cream itself. The coffee flavoured ice cream is topped with white chocolate and tiny biscuit bits.
My guilty pleasure is the salty caramel. We have an on-again, off-again relationship. At the moment we are on a break since I have started walking a different route to work to avoid Giapo’s glowing purple beacon sign that calls to me and forces me to buy an entire carton of salty caramel. The ice cream is worth the guilt though. The presentation is Insta-worthy and the sea salt flavor balances the sweetness of the caramel perfectly. Actually. Scratch the ex-partner analogy I mentioned earlier. I am ready to go steady with Giapo.