931 NW 23rd Ave
Like French glace, Italian gelato also calls for eggs, but usually contains two-thirds less cream and is frozen at a slightly warmer temperature, making it both lighter and more intensely flavored than ice cream. At this six-year-old gelateria, fresh, daily made favorites include classic flavors like hazelnut, pistachio, and the heart-stoppingly rich yellow cake—which is nothing more than egg-laden cake batter frozen into a gelato.
THE MAD SCIENTIST
1752 SE Hawthorne Blvd
Channeling renowned chefs like Ferran Adrià (El Bulli) and Heston Blumenthal (The Fat Duck), Castagna chef Matt Lightner brings Portland the next innovation in the 450-year ice cream tradition: the Pacojet, a $3,950 Swiss-made, Mr. Coffee-size ice cream machine. Filling its metal beaker with fresh ricotta, milk, and sugar, or with cooked beets, water, sugar, and grapefruit, Lightner shows why he’s been a James Beard Award finalist with his four-star-worthy fresh-cheese ice creams and beet sorbets, each with a taste that justifies the capital investment.
Cool Moon Ice Cream
1105 NW Johnson St
Located on kid-friendly Jamison Square, Cool Moon is Portland’s top destination for American-style ice cream. Owner Eva Bernhard’s reverence for what’s local and seasonal perfectly blends the ice cream of your childhood with the craft and quality ingredients that have put Portland on the global gastronomical map. Basics like vanilla and chocolate are top sellers, but they’re also the building blocks for the greatness of her coffee crackle, a coffee ice cream graveled with semisweet pebbles of Belgian chocolate. Cool Moon’s Kulfi—an Indian-style cardamom, rose water, and pistachio ice cream—is one of the most striking scoops around.