Welcome, fellow gluttons! Welcome, my sweet-toothed friends! If you’re looking for the best places to eat gelato in Rome, I’m here for you – with a round-up of 9 must-visit places.
Obviously, this is by no means an extensive list. There are possibly even more gelaterias in Rome than there are churches – which is to say, there are a lot.
But not all gelato is created equal. For the true gelato experience, look for all-natural ingredients and artisanal gelaterias. There’s more on what to look for (and what to avoid) at the end of this post, but to start with, here are 9 shops where you are sure to have an amazing experience.
“But, Emily,” I hear you say. ” You were only in Rome for 4 days. There’s no way you ate at all these gelato places”. Well, yes, yes I did.
I am a greedy little so-and-so when it comes to sweet stuff, especially ice cream, and in the 4 days I was in Rome I ate gelato 7 times. In fact, I had 4 in one afternoon!
I did a lot of research, I asked online and pestered locals for recommendations, and I made my must-try list before I even set foot on Rome’s streets.
Then, I tried them all (excepting the two that were closed), and I published the list to help my fellow gelato-fiends plan their own trips. Enjoy…
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9 Places to Try Gelato in Rome
Il Gelato di San Crispino
A tiny shop tucked into a side street not far from the Trevi Fountain, Il Gelato di San Crispino is something of an institution in Rome. It’s also the gelateria mentioned in Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat Pray Love – so enjoys a fair bit of fame.
The company is actually a small franchise, but it was founded in Rome’s San Giovanni neighbourhood in the nineties – where the original shop still stands on Via Acaia.
The owners, brothers Pasqual and Guiseppe Alongi, are purists dedicated to natural flavours and quality ingredients. No artificial preservatives or chemical emulsifiers here – just exceptional gelato made for connoisseurs.
Try the: San Crispino Honey is the shop’s signature flavour. Team it with rich cacao or smooth hazelnut for a decadent treat.
Neve di Latte
This trendy shop in Rome’s Flaminio neighbourhood is part retro ice cream parlour, part Instagramable coffee shop. But the neon signs and cool decor are nothing compared with the dazzling array of gelatos and sorbets.
Neve di Latte is slightly off the tourist track and was heaving with locals when I visited, which is always a good sign. There were several more unusual flavours to try, but the focus seemed to be on the classics – using high-quality natural ingredients. It felt like you get more bang for your buck, too, with massive scoop sizes for a very reasonable price!
Try the: Pomegranate sorbet for something a little different, or the 75% cacao for serious chocoholics!
Founded by South Tyrolean master Günther Rohregger, Günther is another high-end gelateria in Rome offering outstanding homemade ice cream. Again, you’ll find all-natural ingredients – coming from meticulously chosen business and craftsmen. It’s easy to see why Günther keeps winning awards!
The menu is seasonal. This applies to the fruits used – always fresh – as well as to limited-edition flavours that suit the time of year. I visited in winter and they had Christmas spice (creamy, cinnamony, and delicious) and pine (yep, the tree. Tasted a bit like a car air freshener!). Be brave and try something new.
Try the: Tiramisu flavour for a true Italian treat.
Glauco Gelateria Monti
I found Glauco by accident, after trekking to another recommended gelateria which turned out to be closed. This tiny little shop called me in with the rainbow of colourful macarons in the window, which you can add to any scoop of gelato!
The shop is very small, with a handful of flavour offerings. But the quality is high and there are a few unusual flavours to try out. Definitely a must if you’re exploring Monti neighbourhood.
Try the: Cannolo Sicilia, a popular Italian dessert turned into a decadent (and slightly sloppy) gelato flavour.
Gelateria Don Nino
The Don Nino chain is run by five-time champion Italian Gelato Master Francesco Mastroianni, and is often cited as the “best gelato in Rome”. They have several locations across Rome, but I visited the one around the corner from the Pantheon.
Everything is 100% natural and all ingredients are carefully chosen – and often seasonal. It’s not just gelato on the menu, there’s also a cafe serving up coffee, pastries, and savouries – all with a focus on fresh local ingredients. But the gelato is, of course, the star of the show!
Try the: Flavour of the month. When I visited it was creme caramel.
Local chain Fatamorgana is one of the most popular gelaterias in Rome, with numerous locations across the city. The array of flavours is almost overwhelming, and this is definitely the place to come if you want to experiment with unusual flavours.
There are plenty of quirky options, with ingredients like rose petals and matcha dotting the menu. You’ll also find interesting flavour blends, such as Seadas – a blend of pecorino cheese, chestnut, honey, and orange peel – or Kentucky Tobacco Chocolate.
Try the: Any of the unique flavours that catch your eye. My personal favourite was the chocolate orange.
Chocoholics won’t want to miss a trip to the Rome branch of historic Italian chocolate shop Venchi, which also happens to serve what is easily the best chocolate ice cream I found in Rome.
Founded in Turin in 1878, Venchi has become a worldwide chain. The gelato shops are a newer addition, with a focus on combining exquisite high-quality chocolate with sensational ice cream. The selection of flavours is quite small, but chocolate dominates the menu – and rightly so, as this is what Venchi do best.
Try the: 75% chocolate for a seriously decadent treat.
Come il Latte
Come il Latte might be one of the most popular gelaterias in Rome. It’s recommended in multiple blogs and articles, and was directly recommended to me by about six different people as well. I can only assume the gelato is amazing – or the company have done some really good marketing!
When I visited in January 2020 the shop was closed for refurbishment, so I wasn’t able to try it personally. But it comes so highly recommended I thought I should still include it.
I also had numerous recommendations for Gelatteria dell’Angeleto in the Monti neighbourhood. Sadly, it was closed in January, so I wasn’t able to try it for myself. But again, it comes so highly recommended that I couldn’t leave it off this list. If you try it, feel free to report back so I can update the post!
How to Find Proper Gelato in Rome
You’ve probably seen those dazzling arrays of tubs piled high with colourful, fluffy-looking ice cream.
These displays, designed to tempt tourists, are usually full of colours and other synthetic ingredients. If you’re looking for high-quality authentic gelato (not ice cream), there are a few tell-tale signs to look out for.
Number one – true gelato is actually stored in a metal container with a lid, so it’s not on display at all.
Natural ingredients are easier to spot than you might think, because the colour of the gelato should be natural-looking, too.
For example, lemon should be white rather than yellow, and pistachio should be brownish rather than bright green. Vibrant colours and shiny neons are generally indicators of bad quality ingredients and synthetic flavours.
Another tip, shared by Claire in the comments below – if the handle is clear, the gelato is dairy-free. Handy to know if you’re lactose intolerant, or exploring Rome with someone who is.
Here’s what to look out for in a gelateria:
- Natural colours
- Metal containers (often covered with lids, rather than piled high)
- Ingredient list – shops should display one, so you can check if the ingredients are natural.
- Texture: gelato should be denser and less piled up.
Is there anywhere missing from this list of the best gelato in Rome? Leave me a comment or get in touch on social media!