Gelato MessinaDecember 17, 2014
Gelato Messina – Rules of Engagement
1. Prepare to queue
No complaints about ‘having been waiting for ten minutes’, like the lady next to me did last week. We’re all here, we’re all in it for ice-cream, and we’re all waiting. Trust me, there will be a queue, but it moves relatively quickly. Just be assertive without being pushy, and you’ll get your turn. Besides, waiting gives you more time to pick your flavours.
2. Know what you want
So help me, if you don’t have your order sorted after waiting for a few minutes, you don’t deserve ice cream. By the time you have the attention of one of the staff in the striped uniform, you should know which flavours you want. Understand that a request to taste a flavour will mean that another person will be served while you taste. Rules of engagement, people, learn them.
3. Make it a late one
All the best people go there after 9pm. We all know this to be true. Mr N and my favourite routine is to get a bunch of friends, devour some Peking ducks at Old Kingdom up the road, then head to Messina around 10pm for dessert. The 50m walk is just enough time to make space in your stomach.
4. Never leave a man behind
Don’t put your ice-cream down, even for a second. Either some small child will come and nab it, or an overly-officious staff member will clean it up while you’re distracted by the guy making fresh gelato in the kitchen window. I once witnessed this happen to a young kid and he. was. distraught. Who can blame him, it really wrenches at your heartstrings, that kind of image.
5. Prepare to take home
The 500ml takeaway tubs are incredibly good value at $10 (or upgrade to a 1000ml tub for $19), and they really pack them in with any mix of flavours of your choice. I’ve often seen groups of four to five people ordering a tub and eating it on the spot! Jug of Carlton? Tub of Messina!
6. Enjoy the show
Not only does the Fitzroy shop have a kick-ass mural on one wall, it’s also got a huge window into the kitchen, where you can see staff busy at work making fresh gelato. It’s pretty mesmerising to see them swirl it out of the ice-cream machine, stopping regularly to add crumbled biscuits, or chopped nuts, or a fruity sauce, or whatever else is called for.
7. Go fruity
On really hot days, head for the counter closest to the door and pick a refreshing combination of fruit-flavoured sorbets (all dairy free). The best ones that I’ve tried are strawberry, passion fruit, lemon and blood orange. The blood orange hits the perfect balance of sweet and sour.
8. Salted caramel white chocolate is where it’s at
This is my all time favourite flavour, I get it nearly every time I’m there. Other favourites of mine are the gianduia bianca, pistachio, and milk chocolate with peanut fudge. The vanilla, much like the fitted sheet, isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Grow a personality and try something more interesting, there are over 40 flavours to choose from.
9. Take advantage of the specials
If Cremino is ever on offer (salted caramel gelato with Italian meringue, gianduia fudge and amaretti biscuits), run like hell and get yourself a scoop. It’s heaven. Right now, their specials include a panettone flavour, and we all know how I feel about panettone. Expect to see me there in the next three days.
10. Dig in
Treat yo’ self!
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