Sunday, June 17, 2012

REVIEW: Talenti Gelato Banana Chocolate Swirl

While I typically enjoy most frozen desserts featuring chocolate, vanilla or caramel, banana-infused flavors have peaked my interest as of late. By virtue of a buy one get one free offer on Talenti at my local supermarket, I decided to sample some of their Banana Chocolate Swirl. The transparent pint used by Talenti effectively shows off the gelato inside, but when compared to their base-only offerings, this one is far more aesthetically pleasing. The crystal clear container displays a modest, lightly colored base mottled with mini morsels of chocolate and a caramel swirl that caresses and contorts itself up against the outside plastic. As I examined the outside, I noticed that bananas were the second ingredients listed, so I was expecting some pretty strong flavors before I even opened it up.

After twisting off the top, a rather robust aroma of vine ripened bananas rose from inside and splotches of the caramel and chocolate could already be seen sitting on the first layer. Talenti’s official description for this 200 calorie per serving flavor is, “Deliciously rich banana gelato is blended with a golden Argentine caramel swirl with bits of elegant chocolate to create a bold flavor reminiscent of the best banana flambé.” As I would soon find out, the taste is even more complex than it sounds. The zesty banana base is something unlike any of the competitor’s banana ice creams. This gelato tastes of fresh, still slightly green bananas that pack more potency when compared to their yellow ice cream counterparts. The density of the gelato melts down a little faster than a super-premium ice cream, but still remains thick enough to show off the unique flavoring.

The Argentine caramel swirl is cut from the same cloth as the one used in many of their other flavors and progresses this pint in much of the same way. It's thick, sticky and is drizzled throughout the entirety of the four servings. When enjoying a nice scoop of this mixture, the banana base is the first to melt, followed by the caramel. What you're left with is a mouthful of chocolate chunks that take far longer to break down. These tidbits of high quality chocolate tastes dark, decadent and provides an ideal finish. My only complaint comes from the fact that even though the mix-ins were lavish, they could have been a bigger. Even with the small swirl and crumbs of broken chocolate, the intense flavoring of the banana gelato still secured Banana Chocolate Swirl a B.

Where I Found It: Ingles Markets
Grade: B

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