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The world’s best gelato is in New Zealand?

by Michael on December 8, 2011


Who would have thought that the world’s best gelato was being made in Auckland, New Zealand? But the city, which was recently selected as the 3rd best city in the world to live, takes it in stride. The owner of Giapo’s is Gianpaolo Grazioli, an Italian native and mad scientist; that’s no exaggeration, in his spare time he is pursuing an advanced physics degree.

Giapo’s doesn’t have a secret ingredient that makes it better than all the rest. But they do make almost all the ingredients that go into their 99% organic gelato. When they offer a tiramisu flavor they make both the mascarpone and chocolate from scratch. For his gianduia they don’t buy Nutella but make their own. To most people that’s crazy but that’s how Giapo’s operates.

Antipasto gelato, do you have that before or after dinner?

Gianpaolo approaches his gelato making like the mad scientist he sort of resembles. His molecular research has led him to pair flavors that work based on how their molecules interact. The result is a blend of flavors that is pushing the envelope in the gelato world. He obviously has a passion for bringing his gelato to the people. As he says, “It is a charity this store. I just make enough to cover expenses.”

Thirty-six flavors are offered at any one time with twenty new ones invented each week. That’s over 1,000 flavors a year that he creates. Recent popular flavors include: caramelized almond and sweet peas; New Zealand seaweed and Sauvignon Blanc grapes; white chocolate and cloves; Kiwi breakfast which includes candied bacon, maple, avocado and eggs; and my favorite, a vanilla and blueberry creme brulee.

Giapo gelato Auckland

Two world famous Italians meet up, Rocky Balboa and Giapo.

In the video below Larissa sat down with Giapo to taste test six new flavors including antipasto. For this one he candies olives, eggplant, red pepper, zucchini and capers. It sounds a bit odd but was fantastic.

Note: The sound quality of the video improves after about 30 seconds once a blender is turned off.

Here’s our video taste test of other New Zealand foods

Click the link to see what flavors Giapo’s is offering this week.


{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

MissElaineous December 8, 2011 at 10:48 pm

Fabulous! The concocter of all concocters!!!! Did you flip a coin to see who got to be the on-camera taster?


Us December 9, 2011 at 2:32 am

No, we just went with our strengths. Michael looks prettier behind camera.


Marian December 9, 2011 at 9:08 am

When does the next flight leave for Auckland? The only ice cream I will use up my calories for is for the gelato in a local gelateria. But they aren’t daring enough to make way out flavors. I’ll have to consider New Zealand for my next trip.


Us December 9, 2011 at 4:05 pm

You would definitely like the antipasto flavor. I tried to convince Giapo to make a lasagna but he wasn’t interested. The pasta is the tough part.


Ross December 12, 2011 at 8:58 pm

Found this… is it true?

How to speak New Zealand

Say out loud for full effect!

Milburn – capital of Victoria
Peck – to fill a suitcase
Pissed aside – chemical which kills insects
Pigs – for hanging out washing with
Pug – large animal with a curly tail
Nin tin dough – computer game
Munner stroney – soup
Min – male of the species
Mess Kara – eye makeup


Sam April 25, 2013 at 5:02 am

As a kiwi born and bred, I can tell you that I don’t recognise ANY of those!


Katja December 6, 2012 at 10:31 am

Oh, well he may be IN New Zealand, but he’s still Italian. Italy’s reputation is safe, I reckon. 😉


Katja December 6, 2012 at 10:35 am

Also, Larissa, I love the look on your face after trying the antipasto one. It’s like, “yeah, you guys just carry on talking, I’m busy here taking a few more mouthfuls …”


Michael March 4, 2013 at 9:23 am

Yes Katja, she was in a whole other world. Such rapture I’ve never seen from her.


Andy March 4, 2013 at 3:33 am

You have to try Messina in Sydney… could be a contender for a this title.


Michael March 4, 2013 at 9:24 am

Hi Andy,

We tried Messina and you’re right. Their gelato is awesome. We found it best to go during the day to avoid the lines.


Chad Hustlington April 25, 2013 at 7:11 pm

As someone who lives in Auckland, I can confirm that this is all true. It’s AMAZING.


jackson April 25, 2013 at 9:11 pm

as a regular of both messina and giapo, i gotta say giapo takes the cake. Messina does some very nice and creative flavours (though so does giapo) but overall giapo is still quite a bit better.


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