North Texas has seen a series of next-wave ice-cream shops opening in the past couple of years, but amid all the Thai-style rolled ice cream and liquid-nitrogen spots rolling in, there’s still some room for new, and relatively old-fashioned, gelato.
And that’s coming — or, rather, is here — with Amorino Gelato, which has announced a grand opening next Thursday at its new location in the burgeoning Shops at Clearfork in southwest Fort Worth. Yes, if the current forecast holds, it doesn’t look like temperatures will get out of the 40s that day, but gelato tastes good no matter the temperature.
In fact, you can try it now, because the store is in soft-opening mode. But if you go to the grand opening, there will be a tasting from 6:30 to 8 p.m. that will include a variety of flavor samples.
Amarino boasts that it’s the real European deal, having originated in Paris (the website even comes up in French) before making it to the United States in 2011, expanding from a store in New York’s West Village to stores in Massachusetts, North Carolina, Georgia, Nevada, California and Texas (if you look carefully on the website, you can toggle it to the U.S. version).
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Amarino was created by Cristiano Sereni and Paolo Benassi, friends since their Italian childhood who opened their first store in 2002 on Paris’ Ile St. Louis. They were inspired by their mutual love of gelato shops to open their own and develop their own recipes and flavors.
Presentation is a big deal here, with gelato designed as “roses” — “carefully constructed petal by petal in as many flavors as patrons desire,” according to a release. The shops have more than two dozen flavors, including such curiosity-piquing names as L’Inimitabile (cocoa-hazelnut), speculoos (inspired by Belgian cinnamon/sugar-cane cookies) and Nocciola Tonda e Gentile (more hazelnut, or as the website put it, “The sophisticated, intense aroma of hazelnuts that just goes on and on ...”),
Also available at Amarino: shakes, Italian cafe pastries, chocolates and gelato-filled macarons, Belgian waffles, French crepes, 10 flavors of hot chocolate, as well as cappuccinos, espressos, tea, and lattes. Wait — did they say gelato-filled macarons?
Amorino is at 5274 Monahans Ave. in The Shops at Clearfork, next to Neiman Marcus. Regular hours are 9 a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, with the caveat that soft-opening hours may differ.