Nani’s Gelato Goes to the ‘Burbs

Nani's GelatoLocation: 6039 Erin Mills Parkway, Mississauga
Website: https://www.nanisgelato.com/

This is gong to be a short one, but I couldn’t not write a post about the recently-opened second location of Nani’s Gelato, deep in the wilds of Mississauga.

It’s slightly larger than the downtown location, though still not big enough for any seating — dashing my dreams of a full, sit-down Nani’s sundae experience.

Nani's Gelato

(This is somewhat unrelated to the topic at hand, but what’s the deal with every Toronto ice cream joint being a grab-and-go experience?  Where are all the sundae bars?  And yes, I know that Demetres exists, but I’m dreaming about a place that serves ice cream on par with Nani’s or Bang Bang that also has a menu of elaborate sundaes.  Someone make this happen please.)

Nani's Gelato

Aside from the sad lack of anything even resembling a sundae, the gelato at the new location is as great as ever.  On this particular visit I got Kit Kat Cookie Monster and Double Chocolate Nutella, and they were both rich, creamy, and delicious.  The Nutella flavour, in particular, has a very intense chocolately richness and is thoroughly delightful.

Quick Bites: Tom’s Dairy Freeze, Bang Bang, Rudy

Sundae from Tom's Dairy Freeze
Caramel Sundae at Tom’s Dairy Freeze

Hey, gotta take advantage of Tom’s while they’re around (they’re closed all winter).  On this particular visit I got a twist with hot caramel sauce, and yeah it’s as tasty as ever.

Bang Bang
Cherry Milkjam at Bang Bang

I’ve found Bang Bang to be a bit hit-or-miss lately, but when they’re good, they’re still really good.  This particular flavour is actually a “twist” of sorts — it combines cherry ice cream with dulce de leche, and yeah that’s a great combo.  The cherry is a bit sour on its own, but mixing it with the sweet richness of the dulce de leche tempers its tartness and is thoroughly delicious.

Rudy
Fried Chicken Sandwich at Rudy

I’ve already written about the fried chicken sandwich at Rudy (A.K.A. the Valentino), so I’m not going to beat a dead horse, but it’s still nothing particularly special.  It wasn’t overcooked this time, so it had that going for it, but it was almost aggressively middling.  If I you had told me it was a fried chicken sandwich from a fast food chain like Wendy’s or A&W, I would have believed you.  And Rudy’s is expanding quite a bit; I guess they’re becoming a fast food chain themselves, so… it is what it is. [shrug]

Quick Bites: Dairy Queen, Uncle Betty’s, Soul Chocolate

Dairy Queen
Pumpkin Pie Blizzard at Dairy Queen

Dairy Queen brings out the pumpkin pie Blizzard once a year, and come on.  Just put it on the regular menu.  It is the king of Blizzards.  It tastes just like a pumpkin pie, but in Blizzard form.  It’s so good.

Uncle Betty's
Sweet Potato Hash at Uncle Betty’s

This is the type of thing I’d normally write a full post about (I haven’t even written about Uncle Betty’s on this blog, though I did try the burger for Tasty Burgers), but honestly?  I don’t want to.  I mean, look at it.  It’s basically just a pile of cubed sweet potatoes with some onions and a little bit of spinach interspersed throughout.  No particular seasoning that I could taste, no caramelization or crispiness… just a bunch of bland sweet potato topped with a couple of poached eggs, and served with a slightly congealed cup of hollandaise on the side.  It tasted as sad as it looks.

Soul Chocolate
Chocolate Shot at Soul Chocolate

I was actually hoping to get the delicious soft serve from Soul Chocolate, but alas, when I went they had just stopped serving it for the season.  I don’t know who came up with the notion that you can only have ice cream in the summer, but that person is a criminal and deserves to go to jail.  So I got the chocolate shot instead, and it’s very good.  It’s not quite on the level of the version they serve at Soma; it’s got an odd sour note that I found a bit off-putting, but is otherwise deeply chocolatey and thoroughly satisfying.

Quick Bites: Tom’s Dairy Freeze, Soma Chocolatemaker, Nani’s Gelato

Tom's Dairy Freeze
Cherry Sundae at Tom’s Dairy Freeze

I mean, come on: if you go the whole summer without going to Tom’s Dairy Freeze at least once, was it really the summer?  I submit that it was not.  It’s certainly not the most exciting ice cream joint in the city, but they’ve been pumping out consistently great no-frills soft serve for decades, and it’s a million times better than the stuff you’ll find at chains like Dairy Queen or McDonald’s.  On this particular visit I got a sundae with chocolate ice cream and cherry sauce, and yeah, that’s a great combo.  The sauce is excessively sweet (it tastes like maraschino cherries in a thick syrup), but then that’s kind of the charm of a place like this.

Soma
Roasted Almond and Sicilian Pistachio at Soma Chocolatemaker

I’ve mentioned before that Soma serves some of the best gelato in the city, and yeah, it’s still top notch.  I recently tried roasted almond and Sicilian pistachio, and both flavours were rich, creamy, and deeply flavourful.

Nani's Gelato
Malai Kulfi and Mango Chocolate Chip at Nani’s

I don’t think I need to spend more time on this blog on the greatness of Nani’s Gelato.  I’ve thoroughly covered that.  So I’ll just say that on a recent visit I tried malai kulfi and mango chocolate chip, and both flavours were unsurprisingly fantastic.  Malai kulfi, in particular, had that perfect Nani’s balance of a unique flavour and amazingly creamy gelato.  As for mango chocolate chip, I’ll admit I was a bit skeptical about the combo of mango and chocolate, and… to be honest, I’m still skeptical.  But the mango ice cream was so delicious that I thoroughly enjoyed it, despite the flavours not working particularly well together.

A Great Ice Cream Pop-up at Good Behaviour

Good BehaviourLocation: 189 Augusta Avenue, Toronto (inside Egg Bae)
Website: https://www.gbicecream.ca/

There are very few good things that have come out of the last year and a half, but one of the few is the explosion of ice cream shops in the GTA.  Yes please to more delicious ice cream.  There’s no such thing as too many ice cream shops, especially if it’s as good as what they’re serving here.

Good Behaviour

Like a lot of the new ice cream shops in the city, Good Behaviour started out selling pints to go, but they’ve very quickly expanded to three pop-up scoop shops: one on Christie, one on Bloor, and the one I visited, inside Egg Bae in Kensington Market.

I tried Chocolate Moose Track, which the menu describes as “dark chocolate base, chunks of chocolate peanut butter cups, & ribbons of chocolate fudge.”

Good Behaviour

I don’t think I got any peanut butter cups, and whatever they sprinkled on top was completely superfluous and actually kinda detracted from the ice cream, but otherwise this was top-notch stuff.

Normally the lack of advertised PB cups would have vexed me, but the ice cream itself was so crazy good that I honestly did not care at all.  The chocolate flavour was delightfully intense, and the ice cream base was perfectly rich and creamy.  It’s way above average.