The latest addition to Cafe Patachou owner Martha Hoover’s family of eateries is Gelo, an Italian-style gelato shop adjacent to her pizzaria, Napolese (114 E. 49th St., 317-925-0765). Gelo opened on Oct. 5, inspired by "the tiny dessert shops in Europe,” says Hoover.
Here, an imported Italian gelato machine churns the batter slower and at a higher temperature than do traditional ice cream makers. This gives the gelato its signature dense, smooth texture. Employees make the batter from scratch in small batches every day, and Gelo doesn't freeze any product overnight. Once a flavor runs out, it's gone for the evening. Chocolate, vanilla, and a silky pistachio gelato are available every day. In addition, Napolese executive chef Tyler Herald will roll out four seasonal varieties that emphasize local flavors, such as this week’s Indiana persimmon and pear-cinnamon, made with bits of cinnamon stick mixed in.
Gelo also serves up tiramisu, seasonal cobbler, and cookies. Biscotti is a natural complement to the hand-crafted cappuccinos, lattes, and espressos. And a rich sipping chocolate, made with whipping cream instead of milk, tops off the European dessert experience. The shop opens daily at 5 p.m.