Sample La Dolce Vita at Vancouver’s sweetest gelato joints

Gelato is a tantalizing frozen treat that can be enjoyed in a cone, by the spoonful or served affogato-style with espresso. If you’re looking to satisfy your sweet tooth with an Old World Italian specialty, we’ve got the scoop on the city’s sweetest gelaterias.

Bella Gelateria

1001 Cordova St W, Vancouver, BC V6C 0B7

Dessert fans will have to wait in line to sample the one-of-a-kind treats at this renowned gelato joint with locations in Coal Harbour and Yaletown. Owner James Coleridge has earned numerous international awards for his authentic handcrafted gelato flavours made with organic, locally sourced ingredients. His preparation methods are traditionally Italian in style but James defies the ordinary when it comes to his inventive recipes. You’ll be returning for multiple scoops when you see the roster of unexpected flavours, which includes everything from banana bread to black sesame to fragrant lavender with Earl Grey tea.

La Casa Gelato By International Ice Cream Factory

1033 Venables St, Vancouver, BC V6A 3R9

With 218 sweet and savoury gelato flavours on display every single day (and more than 500 in rotation throughout the year), this longstanding gelateria in Stratchona warrants repeat visits. Picking a flavour can be a challenge since there’s truly something for everyone, but why go with classic chocolate when you can sample exotic options like wasabi or kimchi? Whatever you decide, we recommend forgoing the cup and ordering your generous scoops in a house-made waffle cone. La Casa Gelato also offers non-fat, low-fat, sugar-free or non-dairy gelatos, sorbettos and yogurts for those who are looking for a relatively guilt-free indulgence.

Dolce Amore

1588 Commercial Dr, Vancouver, BC V5L 3Y2

It’s no surprise that Vancouver’s Little Italy neighbourhood is home to some of the city’s best gelato. The Grippo family has been serving up fine frozen desserts at their traditional Italian gelateria for four generations. The small-batch gelato has a smooth consistency and is available in a range of classic varieties and imaginative flavours like Kinder Surprise and caramel popcorn. For a real indulgence, ask to have your gelato sandwiched between two fresh-baked cookies. Seating is limited at this cash-only spot so it’s best to take your treat to go and enjoy it while strolling along The Drive.

Yaletown Gelato

122-1208 Homer St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2Y5

Tucked inside a retail arcade on Homer Street, this neighbourhood gelato joint might not attract as much hype as the surrounding Yaletown eateries, but its quaint ambiance and tasty dessert offerings definitely make it worth a visit. The interior has a European feel complete with an Italian Vespa on display, and the sidewalk bistro tables make a great locale for people watching during the summer months. We recommend an affogato with Lavazza espresso drizzled atop your choice of gelato flavour – go with classic vanilla or stracciatella for a chocolatey twist.

D'oro Gelato e Caffè

1094 Denman Street, Vancouver, BC V6G 2M8

If you’re looking to grab a sweet treat on the way to the beach at English Bay you can’t go wrong with D’oro Gelato on Denman Street. The spacious café specializes in European snacks and sweet treats. Artisanal gelato and sorbettos are made with fresh, local ingredients using traditional Sicilian recipes. Sweet-toothed visitors will appreciate the selection of chocolate-forward options, such as Nutella, Toblerone, chocolate orange and Oreo cheesecake. You can also enjoy a scoop of gelato as a shopping-spree pick-me-up at the D’oro location on Robson Street.

Fresh Homemade Gelato

105-1535 Johnston St, Vancouver, BC V6H 3R9

Escape the bustling crowds at the Granville Island Public Market and grab a seat at this charming spot tucked away behind the Arts Club Theatre. The family-owned café is a serene space that offers a quiet alternative to the busier gelato stands in the nearby market. Visitors can sample a selection of 18 homemade gelato and sorbet flavours, as well as organic coffee and specialty loose-leaf teas. The gelato menu here focuses on classic standbys – tiramisu, cookies and cream, cappuccino and maple walnut, to name a few – and the service is warm and welcoming.

Calabria Bar

1745 Commercial Dr, Vancouver, BC V5N 4A4

Everybody’s part of la famiglia at Francesco Murdocco’s coffee shop and bar, aptly named after his Italian birthplace. Francesco first opened his café on Commercial Drive in 1976, making this one of the oldest Italian coffee houses in Vancouver. Café Calabria has a warm, welcoming interior with a kitschy European ambiance complete with imposing columns, Romanesque marble statues and Sistine Chapel style frescos on the ceiling. The handmade gelato tempts visitors from behind the glass in colourful rows of classic varieties like nocciola, tiramisu and stracciatella. The neighbourhood spot also serves made-to-order paninis and focaccia sandwiches.

Amato Gelato Cafe

78 1st Avenue E, Vancouver, BC V5T 1A1

The retail outlet for Mario’s Gelati might be a bit off the beaten track but it still manages to impress plenty of dessert devotees throughout the year. The imported Italian display cases feature more than 70 rotating flavours of premium Mario’s Gelati gelato, ranging from light and fruity sorbettos to decadent indulgences as well as specialty products such as gelato-based cakes, pies and tortes. Order your gelato by the scoop or pick up a 500 ml or 1 litre take-home container in bestselling flavours like chocolate, tiramisu, vanilla bean and chocolate peanut butter.

Paradiso Italian Gelato

1520 Yew St, Vancouver, BC V6K 3E4

Dare to make it a double scoop at this Yew Street gelateria conveniently located just half a block away from Kitsilano beach. Display cases are stocked with reasonably priced fruit sorbets and light-yet-creamy gelato temptations. Don’t worry if you’re feeling indecisive – the counter staff are very generous when it comes to spooning out samples. The cookie monster flavour is a popular pick packed with crushed Oreo bits and graham cracker crumbs.

Brazza Gelato & Coffee

610-879 Marine Dr, North Vancouver, BC V7P 1R7

With locations on Lonsdale Avenue, 14th Street and Marine Drive, Brazza is North Van’s answer to the classic European espresso bar. Baristas serve up fresh-pressed espresso imported directly from Italy and display cases are stocked with an assortment of handcrafted gelato flavours. The artisanal treat is made fresh on-site daily and has a dense, velvety texture. In addition to the classic frozen dessert varieties, you’ll also find dairy free, sugar free and soy-based gelato options available in waffle cones, waffle bowls, regular cups, or in liquid form as an affogato, a milkshake or a latte gelato float.

Tourism Vancouver’s annual Dine Out Vancouver Festival is back this winter from January 19th to February 4th. The 17-day culinary festival will see some of the city’s hottest restaurants serving an array of mouth-watering prix-fixe menus. If you want to take your significant other for a special meal, plan a date night at one of these romantic eateries. [Photo courtesy of Boulevard/Leila Kwok]
Tourism Vancouver’s Dine Out Vancouver Festival is back this winter from January 19th to February 4th. The 17-day culinary event will see some of the city’s top restaurants serving mouth-watering prix-fixe menus for lunch and dinner. If you’re looking for a kid-approved spot with a casual atmosphere and plenty of choices for picky eaters, book a table at these family-friendly restaurants. [Photo courtesy of Bufala]
Tourism Vancouver’s annual Dine Out Vancouver Festival is back this winter from January 19th to February 4th. The 17-day culinary event provides foodies with a great opportunity to eat at Vancouver’s most acclaimed restaurants for less. If you want an upscale meal in an elegant setting, these high-end spots deliver a great bang for your buck. [Photo courtesy of YEW Seafood + Bar]
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