Gelato Fiasco transports you to delicious Italy

Linda and I fell in love with gelato many years ago on our first trip to Greve, Italy. A small gelato shop was in the village square, and after our first visit, we were hooked.

So, when we returned to Maine, we purchased some gelato, but was disappointed. It was not nearly as good as the gelato we enjoyed in Italy. But soon after that, Gelato Fiasco opened, and – Wow! – their gelato took us right back to Italy.

And now, thanks to the owners, Joshua Davis and Bruno Tropeano, and writer Cynthia Finnemore Simonds, I understand why their gelato is the real thing.

In Italy, gelato is made fresh every day using local milk, the finest ingredients, and traditional techniques perfected centuries ago. Unfortunately, gelato in the United States did not honor the Italian way, instead making gelato that is bland, pre-made, and over-iced.

But Joshua and Bruno decided to stick to the Italian way, and that was a great decision. Their gelato is now served throughout the United States and around the world. We usually stop at their Brunswick store that is always busy.

It’s nice to know they get all their milk from Maine dairy farms. “Our milk commitment means that we’re not only supporting the farms that are important to Maine’s culture, economy, and landscape, but that we’re also using what we believe is the richest, freshest milk in America (maybe we believe that because we grew up drinking it).” Me too guys.

First – a warning. The book Gelato Fiasco, published by Down East Books, is full of luscious photos. You will have to stop reading from time to time, to purchase and enjoy some of those fantastic gelatos in the photos.

The book also gives you the details of what makes Italian gelato so special and even tells you how to make it at home.

Over their 10 years, they have made more than 1,500 flavors but only about 40 on any give day. But if you have favorite flavors, they post their daily flavors every morning on their website.

After drooling over many of the photos, I’ve got a list of those I must try– Chocolate Bacon, Hazelnut Dark Chocolate, Key Lime Pie, Mascarpone Pistachio Caramel, Stracciatella, Toasted Coconut, Whoopie Pie, and Wild Maine Blueberries and Cream. OK, this is my short list. It would be fun and amazing to try all 1,500 flavors!

I have a serious illness, ALS, which prevents us from getting back to Italy, but it’s nice to know that Gelato Fiasco is standing by, right here in Maine, to take me there.

George Smith

About George Smith

George stepped down at the end of 2010 after 18 years as the executive director of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine to write full time. He writes a weekly editorial page column in the Kennebec Journal and Waterville Morning Sentinel, a weekly travel column in those same newspapers (with his wife Linda), monthly columns in The Maine Sportsman magazine, two outdoor news blogs (one on his website,, and one on the website of the Bangor Daily News), and special columns for many publications and newsletters. Islandport Press published a book of George's favorite columns, "A Life Lived Outdoors" in 2014. In 2014, George also won a Maine Press Association award for writing the state's bet sports blog. In 2016, Down East Books published George's book, Maine Sporting Camps, and Islandport Press published George and his wife Linda's travel book, Take It From ME, about their favorite Maine inns and restaurants.