Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Review: Talenti Sea Salt Caramel Gelato

If you have visited this blog before or read even semi-regularly, you can probably figure out that I'm a sucker for frozen treats, especially ice cream.  It takes every fiber of strength that I have to not walk through the ice cream aisle at the grocery store on a regular basis (I usually lose and end up doing it anyway) and recently on a trip through the ice cream aisle at Meijer, I saw a sale on Talenti Sea Salt Caramel Gelato for 50% off and decided that I HAD to pick up a pint when it was such a great deal (regular price is $4.99).  As you can see, I was so "desperate" for this Gelato that I ate half the pint before I remembered to take a picture.  Oops.

For those of you that don't know what Gelato is (don't feel bad, I didn't know until about a year ago; yeah, I'm a rube), it's very similar to ice cream except that it has less butterfat and more sugar.  Calorie-wise, this was was 240 calories per serving and each pint contains four servings.  I don't know how pints can claim they are four servings, but that's a rant for another day.

Talenti containers are clear plastic, so seeing the color of the Gelato was no surprise to me.  It was a light brown color as you would expect from caramel.  What surprised me when I opened this and started eating was that the pint included little chocolate covered caramel pieces in addition to the caramel flavored gelato.  Talenti calls them "truffles" and these little buggers were certainly not visible from the outside of the pint and were a welcome surprise.  These chunks weren't huge, but I would compare them to mini Reese's Cups.

I love caramel and the caramel flavor of this gelato is very solid.  Because of the butterfat content, it wasn't creamy like a regular premium ice cream, but it was still very nice.  Other reviewers (there's a ton of reviews out there; I will link some of them below) have called this effect "dryness" and I think that is a good way to describe it.  When you add in the nice, pleasant caramel gelato taste with the mini caramel chunks, it is a nice combination.  The caramel chunks, while there were not a lot of them, added a nice crunch to the gelato and since I'm a crunchy junkie, I loved that.  As for the promised sea salt component of the taste, I didn't really find it anywhere, which was a good thing.  The idea of sea salt in this kind of frightened me, but the fact that the taste of salt was weak, if not undetectable, was very, very nice.

Buy It or Fly Buy It?  This one is maybe the toughest call that I've had on this blog.  The taste of this gelato was outstanding, but $4.99 a pint at regular price is pretty steep.  If you can find it on sale or don't care about paying a little extra for a comfort food treat, definitely BUY IT.  If cost is your driver, stay away.  Personally, I will buy it every time it is on sale, but outside of that, I'll stick to the cheaper stuff.

As promised, here's some of the other reviews of this out there:
*On Second Scoop
*Rodzilla Reviews
*Freezer Burns
*Foodette Reviews

1 comment:

  1. I apologize for striking the dissonant note in this lavish critique but I have just had Talenti Sea Salt Caramel Gelato and I am far from enthusiastic about it. I too was surprised to stumble on those so-called "truffles" as the container only says Sea Salt Caramel. I already had the same bad surprise with their Double Dark and the "morsels" of chocolate you can't taste anyway because they are to cold for your tongue to identify them. So you end up either chewing on what feels like wax or you would wait a bit for the chocolate melts in mouth so you have a chance to taste it while your ice cream is melting. Either way, you lose. Same deal with the Sea Salt Caramel. Crazy Food Dude was luckier than me in identifying what those "truffles" are supposed to be. Either I munched on then and I had the usual "wax experience" or I waited, while my ice cream melted in the container, to try to identify what the pesky critters were, but I would have had to wait too long for my mouth to bring to the right temperature to properly be able to accurately guess what they were. Only then was I able to discern a distinct saltiness, but by then the ice cram had melted so badly in the container that I could no longer go at with the spoon without the ice cream gliding and moving all over the pot, making it impossible to spoon out. If you want my opinion, when you sell something that says "gelato" stick wit it or call it "frozen with a whole bunch of annoying stuff you never unexpected inside". This isn't gelato. Stay away from the Roman Raspberry as well, as it leaves a very bizarre and hard to define but definitely unpleasant gritty feel in your mouth. So far, the only acceptable experience with the Talenti products I have had is their Lisbon Lemon.


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