Il Gelato Di Ariela
131 Stroud Green Road
Nearest Tube: Finsbury Park
Expect to pay: Anything from £1.50 upwards
We all know from our Cornetto-obsessed childhood that Ice Cream is lovely but now we're older it makes us fat. And reduced-fat ice cream mings for Britain. So we all live in misery.
Until now. By good fortune, this Londonista stumbled across a jewel in the crown of frozen dessert purveyors and so we will share (we're good like that). Il Gelato di Ariela is a stand-alone business within a pizzeria in north london (they supply the desserts for the restaurant, but also have their own window onto the street, showing tubs of hand-made gelato).
What a discovery! They use milk rather than cream, so their desserts are almost HEALTHY. Owned and made on the premises by Ariela herself, the stuff has proven so popular that she now employs staff for front-of-house. On hot days she's been seen biking down to Portobello Road and selling from the handbasket.
Last night we were served by the lovely Daniella, with 18 flavours on display, many of which we tried - Cookies; Ferrero Roche; Melon; Yogurt Sour Cherry, you name it (life as a Londonista can be so very, very hard.) We finally settled on our favourite - 'Dolce Latte' (effectively this was 'toffee with crunchy bits').
There's even an ultra healthy option for the most guilt-ridden among us. We tried chocolate, made unpromisingly from rice milk (so lactose free, gluten free, fat free, sugar free - how dull and tasteless does that sound?) but it was shockingly chocolately rich. Woof!
We think she should move into selling through supermarkets. A tub of that in the freezer and we might never leave the house. Knocks the socks off Cornettos.
Image of Ariela from Ariela's own website