January 10, 2015 Lebanon Middle East

2014: Best Ice Cream and Gelato in Lebanon


Hanna Mitri: The World's Best Ice Cream

I truly doubt that all Lebanese people don't know or have not heard of Hanna Mitri. The one and only Hanna Mitri known for his uniquely fresh ice cream, perfect Maamoul and arrogantly rude character. Following his steps is his son Mitri Hanna, the sole carrier of this legend's recipes. I spent two whole hours tasting what I can safely say is the best ice cream in the world. So if you think you’ve had good ice cream before; trust me, you haven’t until you’ve tasted Hanna Mitri’s Middle Eastern ice cream in Achrafieh.

Made in Beirut: Ignore the Name, Oslo’s Lebanese

Who doesn't know Oslo by now, the famous ice cream maker who took Lebanon by storm, offering one of the finest one-liter tubs found in the country. For the last decade or so, I have been waiting yearly for the summer season to indulge in some of Oslo’s fine ice cream creations. I, like many of us, have been intrigued over the origins of their name, and now they’ve opened their first shop, in Mar Mikhael, I had a chance to find out.

Azrak Ice Cream: Famous and Now Open for Summer

People come to enjoy Azrak's unique pastries and ice cream… Driving the distance from Beirut to the beautiful hills of Baabdat in Al Metn is not a problem. They are so popular that a street in Baabdat was named after them... Riri and Robert, the Azrak brothers, have followed their family's footsteps to create ice cream and sweets, using the best and most natural ingredients, loved and devoured by many.

The Darkest and Tastiest Chocolate Ice Cream in Lebanon

I've always been a big fan of chocolate ice cream but never found the one I've been dreaming of in Lebanon. The reason is simple: most commercial chocolate ice creams (even Haagen Dazs) is far too milky and far too sweet for my taste. Like my bars of good chocolate, I like my chocolate ice cream dark and strong.

Shockolat: 85% Dark Chocolate, Sorbet, No-Milk Ice Cream

Last year, I was happily impressed to discover what I called "the darkest chocolate ice cream in Lebanon." Back then, I didn't get much details about this invention but enjoyed its rich chocolate color and flavor. During my recent visit to InShape, the health and shape expo at BIEL, I passed in front of a stand with a catchy name: "Shockolat". Not only was the name catchy, what they served was just as impressive. 

Bouzat el Berdawni: Zahle's Living Tradition

Berdawni isn't only about Casino Arabi and Casino Mhanna, it’s also about the tastiest ice cream in Zahle and the famous Semsmieh. Visiting Zahle for a food discovery, specifically some sweet treats.

Helado... Pure Frozen Treats

Two reviews in less than a week! You must think I am crazy or something. I just had to, so much to try and taste. Last Sunday when I visited Helado, it was so busy that I couldn't really talk with the owners, take down some notes or taste calmly. I went back hoping it was less busy, but it turns out that Helado is making big noise in the country.

Flor: Tasty Ice Cream, Rich in Texture and Flavor

After publishing the review about my favorite ice creams in town, a ice cream place kept coming up on most comments, again and again: Flor. I made it a point to go down to Hamra and check what Flor is all about. To tell you the truth, for a while now, I have not been too impressed with the ice cream we are selling around the city, except two providers. There's this added sweetness and synthetic taste that disgusts me. That night, I was positively amazed.

Al Zahra, Tripoli: Sweet Delights Since 1930

Breakfast at Akra led us to a quick discovery before lunch. We were informed that the finest ice cream spot is located a hundred meters down the street, so we started walking. Al Zahra, Zakaria brothers located somewhere in the heart of Tripoli has been producing ice cream since 1930.

My Latest Discovery: OrsoBianco Gelato

We often ask ourselves... Which is better and why? And this is about everything around us...  Since it's summer and we're all craving something cold, let's talk about ice cream. Creating good ice cream is not as easy as you might think. My latest discovery is Orsobianco, a product which started in a small kitchen in Bsalim back in 2007. Since 2009, they have been researching and traveling back and forth to Italy, France and the US in order to come up with the best recipes for the renowned gelato. They have grown out of the kitchen and into a professional ice cream factory. This brand has become the latest talk of the town and I wanted to try it. Choose from their daily produced flavors that include chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, lemon, cheesecake, and more, or some of their more innovative creations like pineapple-basil, lemoncello, port-fraise, etc. The passion that goes into every step of the production process is reflected in the taste of each one of their products. 

Al Hallab's New Summer Collection of Oriental Sweets with Ice Cream

I read a 'tweet' saying that Al Hallab has introduced a number of new desserts to their menu. Of course I rushed to check it out… My sweet tooth was craving for something new and one of the mouthwatering items “Hallab Bassma” caught my attention.





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