Warsaw has DOZENS of fantastic ice cream options, and possibly even more – but for the best of the best then it is these tried and tested favourites that truly stand out…
Dal Dalla Gelato
Meet Luca Dalla Costa, a former marketing bod that woke up one day and said, “f**k it, I’ll open a gelateria!” Working on a trial and error approach, he’s mixed Venetian techniques with the freshest ingredients to create a magic world where weaknesses don’t exist – even making his own savoiardi biscuits for the tiramisu ice cream, Luca’s passion is only beaten by the quality of the end product.
Various locations inc. Dąbrowskiego 1
Limoni were part of the first wave of pioneers that revolutionised Warsaw’s ice cream scene, and to this day they remain a favourite of the public – dogs as well. Serving lactose- and sugar-free dog friendly ice cream made from soy milk and vegetable cream, find it available in blueberry and honey-banana flavours (and yes, it’s fit for human consumption as well!).
Known as the vegan square mile on account of its proliferation of vegan restaurants and cafes, it’s no surprise to find that this area of south central Warsaw is also home to a vegan gelato stop (‘vegelato’). The sugar-free creations include essential orders such as mango lassi or raspberry & cardamom. It vibes pretty perfectly with the area’s indy undercurrent.
Wojska Polskiego 41
The choice isn’t just vast, it’s sugar-free thanks to their commitment to using natural stevia instead of artificial, synthesized nasties. Few leave with anything but rave reviews, and their cause is furthered by an equally impressive choice of cakes and tarts. Everyone in Żoliborz seems to have visited, and you should as well – if it’s in stock, try the lime.
Born in Kraków in 2016, Good Lood have flourished to become a nationwide phenomenon. Sugar- and lactose-free, their milky ice creams and natural sorbets go beyond expectations to showcase consistently great – and occasionally adventurous – flavours free from colourants and enhancers. With 30 outposts to visit around the country, check their web for your nearest location: goodlood.com.
Set within an old dairy plant, you’re pretty much guaranteed to find The Fat Cat appearing on every rundown of local ice cream faves. The choice here is narrower than most, but the quality is A-Class. Squeezed inside a pair of cookies, the ice cream sandwich is an essential order. More than just ice cream, combine your ice cream with high-quality specialty coffee.
Brzeska 29/31 / Francuska 31 / Polna 30A / Puławska 51 (pictured above)
Made to Italian recipes reputed to be 160-years old (with some personal magic thrown in), Pallone pride themselves on quality ingredients: chocolate from Belgian and Colombia, citrus fruits from Sicily, and the finest cream and milk you’ll find in Poland. There’s nothing too wacky about the flavour choice but the tastes will punch you out.
Although their legendary stand at Hala Gwardii has disappeared along with Gwardii’s food hall, Ice Pot addicts can still get their fix down south. Produced by a true enthusiast, the seasonal flavours and occasionally wacky experiments (mulled wine, apple pie, etc.) never score less than a perfect ten. Of their wilder successes, the pear with honey stands especially tall.
Rite of Passage
Na Końcu Tęczy
Al. Wyzwolenia 15 & Elektrownia (ul. Dobra 42)
Named in honour of the rainbow that once stood dead centre of Pl. Zbawiciela, this vibrant spot occasionally likes to push the envelope when it comes to flavours, but it’s the fruity tastes that seem to work the best: the kiwi mascarpone is another level, as is the apple sorbet. Lines can stretch on the weekend, but that’s all part of the experience.
Amid a hugely competitive field, the wide flavor choice, quality ingredients and loving hand of Jednorożec mark them a notch above their immediate competitors in Mokotów. With a rotating roster of around 30 flavours to try, find your ice cream served with a miniature cone perched at a jaunty angle on top of your scoop.
Krakowskie Przedmieście 13 (Raffles Europejski Warsaw)
Ever since its launch in the 19th century, the Europejski Hotel has been known for its elegant patisserie – the Lourse. Revived by Raffles, there’s no better indulgence after promenading up the Royal Route on a bright, sunny day. Also available from a vintage cart stood outside, we can vouch for their deliciously luxurious apricot flavour.
For Those That Like It Hot
Feminine and pink on the inside, most order their scoop before enjoying it outside sat on the concrete steps. Crowd favourites number the creamy mango lassi, though it’s their chocolate-based temptations that represent their strongest suite. In this regard, consider their chocolate habanero as the unique selling point – coming with a fiery twist, it’s got a cheeky punch that will tickle the tonsils.
The Insider’s Favorite!
A mainstay of Saka Kępa, Sosenka’s non-descript look belies the flavours – changing frequently to reflect the season, these run from local-grown fruit tastes to more unusual exotica such as lemongrass and ginger (Tajska). For much the same offer, plus lashings of frozen yoghurt drizzled with fruit, check their wooden cabin on Francuska 30 – you’ll see the queue before you see the place.