Saturday, April 14, 2007

The Lowdown: Bulgarini Gelato

Thursday's LA Times Food section sent us trekking up to Altadena yesterday, to the brand new location of Bulgarini Gelato at the corner of Lake and Altadena, in the Rite Aid shopping center. In fact, we were so thrilled with the description of Bulgarini's fresh-made fruit ice creams that we neglected to see that their grand opening wasn't until today. So imagine our disappointment when the shop was closed up tight with only the window washer sparkling up the glass for today's big fete.

We weren't the only ones who arrived to a closed shop, but we were the only ones who stayed to lick our wounds in the newly created outdoor space. But when owner Leo Bulgarini peeked outside to see what our sad quartet was doing and heard that we'd driven all the way from Echo Park, he invited us inside for a quick scoop, actually 4.

After tasting about a dozen flavors, we settled on the amazingly flavorful and nutty pistachio mentioned in the Times piece, a wonderfully sweet and tart blood orange granita, a subtle blueberry and, of course, chocolate. It was all delicious, and the granita was simply the best i've had. (Sorry there are no photos, but the gelato was gone before we thought of memoralizing it.) While he was obviously in a hurry to transport some gelato to his other locations at the Laemmle Playhouse theaters and the Pacific Asia Museum, both in Pasadena, he didn't rush us and graciously served the father/daughter pair that snuck in behind us before locking the doors and rushing off with buckets of gelato to his other locations.

For those of you who are heading up there today for their grand opening--and undoubtedly long lines--it's worth it. Buona fortuna Bulgarinis on your new business. We'll be back. Soon.

Bulgarini Gelato
749 E. Altadena Dr.
Altadena, CA 91001

Wed-Sun: Noon-8 p.m.