Chocolate ice-cream with pig’s blood?

This is the kind of ice-cream served at Gelupo.  I had pig’s blood many times in savoury dishes but never in dessert. How could I resist trying it out?  Wondering whether it was just a gimmick, I asked the guy at the counter how much pig’s blood is in it exactly? ‘1 in 8’ he said. Exactly 1 in 8 of what? I had no idea as I already got distracted by the taster he handed out to me.

Sanguinaccio (its Italian name) does not taste like the pig’s blood I had before nor did it taste like human blood (I am sure most of us bite our lips and taste our own blood before). It has a hint of unique irony flavour, which goes very well with the smooth chocolate. I ordered it, together with one scoop Pistachio ice-cream. (photo below, right). It is a good combination as the latter is nutty and full of natural pistachio flavour. In all, the ice-creams feel lighter than some Italian ice-cream I had before.

There are some seasonal flavours on offer, like pumpkin with cinnamon (it’s around Halloween afterall!) My friend had a Ricotta, pear and cinnamon one, together with a Mirabelle plum sorbet. (photo above, left) He loved it though I think it was a little too sweet for my liking. I am not a sorbet person generally speaking though it does come in tempting flavours, like coconut and cachi. While we were there, we saw some being served in fresh fruits too! The ‘made to order’ service could be a refreshing treat for summer parties.

I was also curious about Gelupo’s granita. They have bigger ice crystals than sorbet and come in fascinating flavours like Fagolina grape, blood orange or sour cherry. I wished I hadn’t had dinner so that I could try them all!

I like the way the menu is set out in Gelupo, which is a series of simple and self-explanatory diagrams. There is a good range of Italian coffee on offer. The staff was friendly and attentive. My friend had an espresso and the staff thoughtfully gave us an extra small glass of water. Though we were not sure whether it was for him or for me who did not order a drink?!

At the back of the shop, there is a deli section, which sells Italian produce, herbs and olive oil as well as a small selection of cookery books.

The atmosphere was relaxing and welcoming. It is certainly a place I would like to go back and explore more!

7 Archer Street
London W1D 7AU
Tel: 020 7287 5555

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