400 Gradi’s Johnny Di Francesco scoops a prime spot on Southbank with his new gelateria where everything on the menu is made from scratch.
Zero Gradi, the gelato arm of the expanding Gradi Group empire by Johnny Di Francesco, is opening up in prime position along the Crown Riverwalk in Southbank on the riverfront at Crown Melbourne on Thursday, 22 April.
Five years since the original Zero Gradi opened its doors on Brunswick East’s Lygon Street, Zero Gradi Gelateria and Dessert Bar at Crown Melbourne will be offering its renowned own-made gelato, sorbets and handcrafted Italian cakes and pastries with coffee and more from Southbank’s Crown Riverwalk.
“Zero Gradi Gelateria and Dessert Bar houses all our pastries, desserts and gelato, made daily by our talented pastry chefs. The display cabinets provide an Italian fanfare of classic desserts with family recipes that have been passed down for generations. We look forward to continuing to expand the Gradi offering to the sweeter things in life,” says Di Francesco.
Made using traditional gelato-making techniques that Di Francesco perfected over two years in Naples, the gelato is churned daily using the high-quality ingredients in professional Carpigiani gelato machines with a minimum 24-hour pasteurisation time. With over 30 different rotating flavours on offer, sweet tooths will enjoy classic Neapolitan gelato flavours such as Lemon, Coffee (Zabaglione) and Pistachio, to the more obscure like Black Hawaii, White Chocolate and Sour Cherry, and Bacio.
For those avoiding dairy, Zero Gradi’s refreshing sorbets are 100 per cent vegan, with a creamy, smooth consistency ensuring the lactose is not missed in taste or texture.
In addition to the gelato, a crepe station, frozen yoghurt machine and Crema Cafe are all on-site, along with Italian pastries and cakes made daily by the creative and dedicated Gradi patisserie chefs. The Cornetti – an Italian croissant that is slightly smaller, slightly softer than its French counterpart – is made with butter imported from Europe, achieving a perfect pastry that rivals Melbourne’s best.
Shop 34, 8 Whiteman Street, (Crown Melbourne Riverwalk) Southbank VIC 3006
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Trading hours: Sun to Thu 7:00am–12:00am; Fri & Sat 7:00am–1:00am
Images: Renee Oliver