As a second-generation gelato maker, with a family whose roots share gelato's own birthplace of Sicily, Lilly Stuckings knows a thing or two about whipping up Italy's favourite frozen summer treat. And you can try them for yourself at her Preston dessert spot Gelato Papa.
The electric blue Gilbert Road venue is serving all-natural gelato in a range of flavours both traditional and inventive, along with a line of decadent cakes made from scratch. A strong focus on locality means you'll often find the ingredient list peppered with the likes of prickly pears and lemons foraged no further than a neighbour's garden.
Stuckings also has a knack for reimagining nostalgic Aussie favourites with a modern, Italian twist, as you'll see with the Violet Crumble cake — a concoction featuring fior di latte and
milk chocolate gelati with a vivid purple chocolate coating, jazzed up with crystallised violet petals and fresh, handmade honeycomb ($35). There's even a riff on a Golden Gaytime ($35) and the classic lemon meringue pie, starring homemade lemon curd and shortbread ($45).
The seasonal gelato range (from $5 a scoop) might feature creations like pink chocolate, coffee choc chip and dulche de leche, alongside a rotation of vegan-friendly editions like mandarin, blood plum and almond maple crunch.
But if you're popping by for a visit this festive season, you'll want to check out Gelato Papa's trio of limited-edition, Christmas-inspired flavours, up for grabs until December 24. Sink your teeth into a cone — or share tub (from $14) — filled with gingerbread gelato, a vegan chocolate candy cane version, or the mince tart and Italian egg nog flavour. This last one's got chunks of Northcote Bakehouse's signature fruit mince scattered through Gelato Papa's creamy custard and marsala gelato.