Gelato World Tour served 9,000 pounds of artisan gelato in Millennium Park over Memorial Day Weekend. Thousands visited the Chicago Stage to taste the best flavors of gelato in the Americas, being served over 78,000 cups and mini-cones.
Sixteen flavors were selected as finalists out of over 100 candidates by a panel of culinary experts led by Jury President Emily Ellyn, the Retro-Rad Chef. Also included in the selection committee, Chef Ben Vaughn (Author, TV Personality), Dr. Robert Bradley (University of Wisconsin, Author) and Luciana Polliotti (World Famous Italian Gelato Journalist).
Sixteen teams came together this weekend in Chicago to compete for The Best Gelato Flavor in the Americas. A panel of expert culinary judges (30%) combined with the public vote (65%) and the opinion of the artisans competing in the event (5%) decided the outcome of the competition. The four winners will move on to compete in Rimini, Italy with winners from the other stages for the title “World’s Best Gelato Flavor.”
1st Place: “Amor-Acuyá” by Daniela Lince Ledesma, Dolce Gelato – Medellin – Colombia
2nd Place: “Chicago Pothole” by Angelo Lollino & Ali Caine Hung, Vero Coffee & Gelato – Elmwood Park Chicago – Illinois – USA
3rd Place: “Rich Chocolate, KOVAL Single-Barrel Organic Bourbon, Ganache Swirl & Maple-Candied Pecans” by Tammy Giuliani, Stella Luna Gelato Café – Ottawa – Canada
Winner Technical Jury Award: “Saffron Pistachio with Candied Lemon Peel Gelato” by Gianluigi Dellaccio, Dolci Gelati Café – Washington DC – USA
Special mention – People’s Choice goes to “Texas Pecan Pie” by Matthew Lee, TÈO – Austin – Texas, and “Passion Fruit Ricotta with Candied Walnuts” by Natalie Yepes, Dolci Peccati Gelato – Miami – Florida – USA
Special mention – Journalist’s Choice goes to “Windy City S’mores” by Baron Gottsacker, Bent Spoon Gelato – Sheboygan – Wisconsin – USA
The artisans produced the gelato onsite in the Carpigiani Laboratory, the biggest ever created in North America, thanks to the support of Sigep-Rimini Fiera. The gelatos were displayed in the award winning IFI cabinets and were produced using the finest selection of PreGel ingredients.
Thousands of visitors witnessed “The Jury Challenge” where each team presented its signature flavor to the Technical Jury, composed of: President, Emily Ellyn, Retro Rad Chef and two-time winner of Food Network’s Cut Throat Kitchen; Chef Ben Vaughn, Author, TV Personality; Chef Mario Rizzotti, Iron Chef Judge; Victoria Jordan Rodriguez, Director of Operations, James Beard House; Chef Thomas Vaccaro, C.E.P.C. C.M.B., Dean of Baking and Pastry Arts at Culinary Institute of America; Chef Tom O’Brien, Food Writer and Kendall College Faculty, Chef Siddharth Mangalore, Baking and Pastry Instructor, Kendall College; Matteo Picariello, Trade Commissioner, Italian Trade Agency; and Sam Toia, President, Illinois Restaurant Association.
Other competitions included the “Tonda Challenge” by IFI and the “Stack it High Showdown” by PreGel. All artisans tested themselves in a battle to the last scoop, using all their ability to prepare the perfect gelato cup of 100 grams (3.5 oz). With two amazing scores of 96 grams and 101 grams, Daniela Lince Ledesma of Dolce Gelato, Antioquia – Colombia, won the Tonda Challenge and the Golden Gelato Spatula, symbol of artisan gelato mastery. There was a tie in the “Stack it High Showdown”. Linda Mercurio, Mercurio’s, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Loris Carlo de Prato, Leonardo’s Gelateria, Barre, Vermont each produced an amazing stack of 8 scoops in 20 seconds.
The Gelato World Tour, which is supported by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and of Economic Development, as well as the Regione Emilia Romagna, is the first international traveling competition in search of the best flavors in the world. Gelato World Tour has visited nine Gelato Capitals – Rome, Valencia, Melbourne, Dubai, Austin, Berlin, Rimini, Singapore and Tokyo. The Tour is directed by Carpigiani Gelato University, the world’s most renowned school for successful gelato entrepreneurs, and Sigep – Rimini Fiera, the world’s premier artisan gelato tradeshow. Two important partners make this event possible: IFI, international leader in the manufacturing of display cases for gelaterias, and PreGel America, the world’s largest producer of ingredients for gelato, pastry and coffee shops.
“Sixteen artisan teams have delighted Chicago with their wonderful gelato creations. They were all unique, sumptuous and surprised even the most discerning palates. We are delighted with the choice of the public and the Technical Jury. We wish the top four flavors who will represent the Americas region at the Grand Finale of the Gelato World Tour in Rimini, Italy in 2017, all the best,” said Achille Sassoli, Director of the Gelato World Tour. He added, “Chicago’s excellence and creativity in the world of pastry, healthy lifestyle and artistic culture delivered on its promise as the perfect city for our tenth world stage. We are extremely grateful for the warm welcome received and to the many visitors who embraced the delight of gelato and stayed to enjoy the fun-filled three days!”
In conjunction with the Gelato World Tour – Americas East stage, the Bruto and Poerio Carpigiani Foundation has launched the “Gelato Smiling” fundraising campaign to support the international Stop Acid Attacks project and give some extra hope to survivors. The objective of this “sweet” crowdfunding campaign is to raise $40,000. These funds will be donated in their entirety to the opening of a gelato shop in Agra, in the state of Uttar Pradesh, within the Sheroes Hangout Café. This café is located near one of the world’s most famous tourist sites, the Taj Mahal. It is therefore a real business opportunity that will provide an opportunity for renewal and for gathering funds to those who have survived acid attacks. The Bruto and Poerio Carpigiani Foundation will provide the necessary equipment and training for the people who work in the gelato shop. Donating is easy: simply go to the Indiegogo platform by following this link:www.generosity.com/community-fundraising/gelato-smiling
Donations are open for 60 days more and will be deliciously rewarded: thank you postcards from the president of the Bruto and Poerio Carpigiani Foundation, Romano Verardi; video thanks featuring the smiles of survivors; T-shirts from Carpigiani Gelato Museum; tasty gelato courses at Carpigiani Gelato University.
Photography available here.
To follow the Gelato World Tour: www.gelatoworldtour.com. On social media: Facebook – Gelato World Tour; Twitter – Gelato World Tour; Flickr – Gelato World Tour; Instagram – gelatoworldtour; YouTube – Gelato World Tour; Hashtag: #gelatoworldtour #GWTChicago