I’ll start this review with the caveat that I have only had Talenti, and gelato as a whole, one time previous to this. I definitely prefer the dense nature of a super premium ice cream, but I will keep an open mind because this concoction sounds quite tantalizing. Talenti Caramel Apple Pie is described as an abundance of real cinnamon sticks are used to make our signature cinnamon gelato. Pieces of apple and sweet flaky pie crust are blended into the cinnamon gelato. Finally a caramel swirl is added for a unique take on caramel apple pie. The caramel swirls visible through Talenti’s signature clear container certainly peak my interest. Upon removing the lid a tiny bit of caramel swirl peaks through the slightly speckled white base. Time to dig in.
The white base didn’t give my high hopes but wow, Cinnamon Buns. They somehow found a way to make a gelato equivalent of one of Ben and Jerry’s signature flavors, a flavor in which pretty much every person I know ranks among their top 5. The gelato has a creamy, almost milky texture that is hard to understand if you’ve never experienced it. At 200 calories per serving, I’m not sure I could ask for much more from this base. Gelato is amazing in the fact that in terms of weight, a serving packs the same heft as a super premium ice cream, but its soft nature makes the act of consuming it so much easier. This can make it very dangerous for those who don’t look to eat the whole pint in one sitting so be forewarned. After the initial shock from the amazing base starts to wear off, I dig deeper in pursuit of the mix-ins.
It definitely doesn’t take long to hit the mix-ins even though the surface was devoid of them. First I went for the caramel. It definitely through me for a loop because I was in full on cinnamon buns mode and was expecting a cinnamon packed swirl, but instead got a smooth natural caramel. The swirl is extremely sweet and packs the punch of a dulce de leche. The caramel immediately sent me back to childhood and the individually wrapped square caramels I used to get from by grandparents. Any ice cream that invokes nostalgia is a winner in my book. The pieces of pie crust are quite abundant immediately under the surface. Their buttery texture and slight crunch give a different mouth feel that is needed in a pint as velvety as this. How they managed to get the consistency of the crust such that it retains its “fresh out of the bakery” texture is beyond me. I think a crispy mix-in is typically vital for great ice cream so the fact that the crust pieces vary in both size and the amount of crunch is welcomed.
Halfway through the pint and I finally hit an apple. To be honest I had been so pleased with the rest of the offering I had forgotten apples were supposed to be a mix-in. The apples provide a chewy mouth feel with the consistency of partially dried fruit. The sweet, natural sugar flavor is unlike anything else in the pint and is quite distinguishable when in a spoonful with everything else. I’m slightly sad it took so long to find one, but the sudden wealth of them now makes it hard to complain. I still prefer ice cream to gelato, but the amazing base combined with 3 unique, well matched mix-ins has gone a long way toward changing my mind on what gelato has to offer.
Where Derek Found It: Weis Markets
Derek's Grade: A