Gelataio/Gelateria in the United States

on Tuesday, December 12, 2006

About 2003 my husband and I came up with the idea of wanting to open a gelateria in the United States. For those of you who have not been to Italy, a gelateria is an Italian ice cream shop. Gelato is different from American ice cream, in that gelato has less air and fat compared to its American counterpart, therefore being healthier and having a creamier texture.

So I did a lot of research, and we had thought we had found someone who had experience running a gelateria and making gelato, a gelato artisian/gelataio. He could speak a pretty good English, lived in the area, plus had a brother living in the United States who had dual citizenship, so getting a visa for him wouldn’t be too much of a problem. In January 2005 the four of us; my husband and I and this guy with the experience (gelataio) and his wife went down to Rimini Italy for an expo of pastries and gelato.

After the expo, my husband asked this gentleman to get some additional information, since he has the experience and knows exactly what equipment is needed etc. This again was back in January 2005. He kept putting it off, basically telling us not interested now, without coming right out and telling us.

Now we’re basically back to almost where we started, except we do have the two years worth of research that I have done, market analysis, business plan almost done, but are in need of a gelataio/in-house gelato artisian. My husband has pretty much given up on this gelateria project because of this, but I am not giving up so easily. I have put so much work into this project to give up, and do feel it can over very well. I want to go forward with this project, I know there are long hours that would still be involved, from opening the gelateria to running it; also providing other products in addition to gelato, for example Italian style pannini (sandwiches) and also maybe coffee and soft drinks. I have experience working 12-15 hours a day, excellent customer service experience (12 years experience), plus 2 years supervisor experience. I feel this would be an excellent opportunity for me to enhance and learn new business skills, management, etc. I have a city already chosen. I am not going to list it here, but I will say this it is in the southern part of the United States, along the Gulf Coast, received a substantial amount of tourists every year, and a downtown that is growing. So opening a gelateria NOW would be getting in on the ground floor so to speak of an expanding downtown, getting in on the ground floor so to speak.

I am still searching for a gelataio/gelato artisian/someone who has experience making gelato. So please get in touch with me! Also, donations are more then welcome to get this project started, there is a make a donation button on the right hand side of this blog, underneath my profile.

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danette said...

Good luck with the project!

Sounds yummy... ;)

Ann said...

Thanks Danette! Really need the luck and all the help I can get!

Brittney-Lynn said...

it sounds like you are talking about pensacola, florida. i have lived here all 20 years of my life and i have to say it would be a great place for gelato! there is already a gelato shop in destin and one in fort walton if that is where you were thinking.

Ann said...

Brittney-Lynn, I was actually thinking a little further west, maybe along the Texas coastline. Want to be in a less hurricane prone area, plus Texas seems to have a lot less Italian ice cream shops (gelateria)at the moment.

EC said...

I think this is a great idea! I wish you much luck and success - that totally stinks that the guy dropped out after all this time. I'm sure you'll find someone so much better :-)

Ann said...

Fate I think had it's hand in this. Maybe there is something bigger/better on the horizon.

Lady Wanderlust said...

I love gelato! There are a couple where I live, but they only offer a few flavors. I had no idea it was less fattening than ice cream. Good luck with opening a shop!

Ed Reif said...
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Successful67 said...
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Successful67 said...
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Rheya said...

what's about your ice cream parlor's project?
I am a professional ice cream maker and ice cream making teacher.
I am italian, but I live in Barcelona ( Spain)
just contact me :
here are my blogs :


Zach said...

Hello Ann

You posted your callout for a gelato artisan almost 3 years ago. Did you provide any updates yet?

As we all know launching a business doesn't happen over night, especially when you have a life full of competing priorities. It can take as many of 5, 10, even 20 years to reach a goal of independent business ownership.

In case you are still mulling the idea, why don't you give a friend of mine back in the States a call? I'll make no effort to disguise the fact that he's a distributor of display equipment for gelaterie. However he has worked with many other aspiring gelateria owners like yourself, and has many connections in the industry. I know he actually attends the same ice cream and dessert conference in Rimini and set up at the Ciam booth.

Anyway, here is his office number 973-287-8010, toll free 1-800-626-5027, or his cellular 201-206-4321. His business info can be found at

His name is Nick Gencareli

He would be happy to offer you some advice... é lui parle italino
; )

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phdomin said...

Ann, hello! I am a MBA student with the Schulich School of Business in Canada and am looking for gelato information for one of my assignments. Things like size of market, past and future growth prospects, etc. Would you have something like this that you could make available, or maybe point me to somewhere I could find it? Thanks in advance!

Paulo Domingues.