We are so excited for new fall flavors around here like: pumpkin, gingersnap, apple cider, etc. Today the weather is even actually starting to feel like fall (currently it’s a “brisk” 70 degrees). To help us get in the mood one of our customers Lori Tisdale of The Salvaged Home helped us with some Halloween decor. She’s super crafty!
I’m so very, very thankful that things at the shop are going so well. I now have time to spend with my family at home and cook dinner on a regular basis. Tonight we made homemade pasta with a swiss chard pesto. I know, I know … homemade pasta is a little over the top. Don’t worry, that’s not our normal routine. I was just embracing my inner Italian (too bad I’m almost 100% Norwegian without a smidge of Italian) I’m just obsessed with European food and culture.
Levi loves fruit (and gelato of course), but I haven’t had any luck getting him to eat vegetables.He also loves pasta so I took the swiss chard I got from the farmer’s market yesterday and sauteed it with some butter and onions. Then I pureed the mixture in the food processor and used it as a pesto on the pasta. Levi didn’t even blink and had three helpings. Woo hoo!
Tuesdays are my favorite. Levi and Jake come down to the shop and we buy tons of local fruit for gelato and sorbet.
This was the EisCafe in Stuttgart where my roommates and I would walk down to a couple of times a week. It was dangerous because it was just above where the S-Bahn let out and below our flat. It’s called Vizzani. This cute spot was just one of many places to get gelato in Stuttgart.
Grand Opening – Saturday, March 24!
It’s the last big push before our Grand Opening this weekend and we are all (including my parents) working like crazy to get ready. Backsplash, lighting, cleaning, final health inspection, furniture, and a last little bit of decor are all that’s needed to get the place ready. Then we have just a bit more testing and training to get done before Saturday. I really can’t believe we’re opening this weekend!
Levi has been such a trooper. He started preschool and although he’s always upset when we leave him in the mornings, every time I pick him up, he’s having so much fun and it take him a while to realize I’m even there. Then he lights up and runs to me. Wow, that’s a good feeling. They must do a lot of dancing at preschool because Levi’s now a dancing ‘fool’ anytime there’s music on. So cute!
My parents are also taking really good care of us. They cook dinner for us often, fold my laundry and take care of Levi any chance they can get. Dad made the cutest kids area where Levi and other little ones can play while at the gelateria. It’s the best because they always bring him by the shop for a little visit so I get to play with him for little breaks during the day.
I feel really lucky to have such great friends and contractors to work with. They really took care of me. I would recommend these guys all day long! They do great work and are amazingly honest and empathetic. I truly feel like I worked with the best guys available.
Woodwork/Drywall/Project Management/Our HERO! – Sam Pulvers (of Distinction Gallery) and his assistant Ira
Architect – Greg Danskin
Concrete Floors – Mark Chavis
Tile Work – Greg Painter
Signage – Scott, owner of Sign Concepts
Plumber – Larry, owner of Pomerado Plumbing
Electrical – Sam Anguiano
Design - Thank you Heather from Design Moe for all my annoying questions!
Paula and Dave are down this weekend to help us work on getting the shop open and she brought me this present. If any of you know Paula, (Jake’s mom) you know this sort of punny sense of humor is quite commonplace. I’ve been told it comes from the “Garske” side of the family. She and my mom both love words …crossword puzzles, scrabble, and “fun with etymology”. If you want to really get them going just use “irregardless” in a sentence and see what happens.
So we did it. We fired up our new batch freezer and made our first batch of gelato. I started with a simple Fior di Latte, basically a sweet cream. I’ve made lots of gelato at home in a small countertop freezer, but only a handful of times on a commercial piece of equipment. The texture was amazing, I must say. In addition to using quality ingredients it’s got to be a result of the quality of the equipment.
When I was first shopping for a batch freezer, I kind of had an idea of the type of machine I was looking for but wanted to get referrals from folks in the biz. I came across Gelateria Del Leone in St Louis, Missouri that used this type of machine and called them up to see if they liked working with it. After leaving a message one of the owners, Chris, gave me a call back and said he loved the machine and that if I ever wanted to see it in action to come by sometime. Amazed with his generosity I said…”how about next week?” Chris not only offered to let me shadow him at the gelateria for a couple of days but invited Jake, Levi (my then 12 month old) and me to stay with him, his wife and their two year old daughter. Since that trip Chris has been so helpful and supportive as Jake and I have been putting the shop together. I was overwhelmed with the kindness of this family and I’m so thankful for their help.
Here is Levi sampling the Fior di Latte. I think he approves. I should probably expand my test market though, I think he’s biased.