Oh, the weather outside is….well, to be honest, it’s heating up rather quickly down here in Central Florida! Those visiting the area are beginning to notice the temperatures rising and finding something to cool them down has risen to the top of the priority list. So, if you happen to be visiting Disney Springs, I have the perfect little spot for you to try in Town Center. Vivoli il Gelato, a cute little gelato store found in The Landing, just opened up a “sweet” little bicycle cart. It is the perfect opportunity to pause, grab something delicious and perhaps “chill out” for a moment or two.
I was invited as media to attend this tasting event. All opinions are mine and mine alone. This post does contain affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure policy for more information.
Let’s start with a little history…
The Vivoli family began with Grandfather Raffaello Vivoli crafting the gelato adventure in Florence, Italy, in the 1930s. For 85 years now, the family-owned business has been creating hand-crafted Italian desserts in Italy’s flagship store, creating robust flavors that have become fan favorites. Today, the third generation continues the tradition through the hard work of Silvana, Raffaello’s granddaughter. Silvana brought the dream to America and first opened a stand in Macy’s flagship store on Herald Square in New York City in 2013. In 2015, she expanded upon that dream and opened the second brick and mortar storefront – this time in Disney Springs. Now, Central Florida has the opportunity to enjoy the delicious family recipes that were crafted so long ago in a little Italian town.
“In Italy, gelato is the greatest treat. It’s a daily ritual and we’re proud to be a part of that tradition.” – Silvana Vivoli
~ The Newest Addition ~
While the store itself over in The Landing has the ability to satisfy cravings for Italian gelati, sorbetti, espresso drinks and more, the company just “wheeled out” a brand new, Italian-made bicycle cart that sits in Disney Springs Town Center. The adorably dapper-designed cart serves Guests eight flavors of deliciousness and ~ if I may so ~ is incredibly Instagram-worthy!
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Yes – It’s Really A Bicycle!!!
Every morning, around 9:30 am, a cast member literally rides the pastel-accented bicycle cart out to its spot in front of the Levi Store in Town Center. Throughout the course of the day, perhaps two or three times over a ten to twelve hour period, someone from the actual store around the corner (about a five minute walk ~ where 24 flavors can be found and more of the history unveiled) will wheel a little freezer over to change out the flavors and keep everything as fresh as possible. When the day is done, the bicycle cart is once again ridden away, only to return the next day to serve up some more sweetness.
Taste-testing is hard work!!
I had the opportunity to meet up with a very small, intimate group of bloggers at Disney Springs on the day the bicycle cart made its first appearance. We gathered over at the storefront and made the five minute trek over, escorted by Gerald, the store manager. We honestly had no idea the treat we were about to experience ~ and I mean that LITERALLY!
When we made it to the cart, the group collectively started snapping photos left and right. They weren’t kidding! This is THE perfect subject for an Instagram photo or story!
Behind the shiny covers that kept the wells protected was Michael – our server for the afternoon. He was ready to share tastes and serve up scoops at our command. Oh, this was going to be fun!
The cart conceals wells that have two layers worth of gelati encased inside. Every flavor is made with fresh, local and simple ingredients. There are no food dyes involved in creating the Italian dessert. (I’m a HUGE fan of that!!!)
The menu offers eight flavors, including five exclusive gelato and sorbet options *only available on the cart.
- Brownie Brittle*
- Toasted Marshmallow*
- Chocolate Hazelnut*
I personally took opportunity to sample Brownie Brittle, Toasted Marshmallow, Strawberry and Limoncello. I then went for a cup of Toasted Marshmallow, followed by a small combination of Strawberry and Limoncello. (There are a few sizes from which to choose and, yes, you can even mix and match flavors).
OH – EM – GOODNESSS!!
Seriously…the strawberry and limoncello gelati were so full of flavor and the Toasted Marshmallow tasted just like marshmallow right off an open fire. No joke! In fact, Michael told me that it actually has REAL marshmallow in it. Of course, that makes it tricky to scoop, but soooooo worth it to eat!
~ Food Allergy Information ~
Having a son with severe, life-threatening food allergies means I have to ask the tough questions sometimes. That means I asked Gerald,, the patient and courteous Cast Member / Manger who escorted us all out to the cart that fine day, whether or not the cart can accommodate dietary restrictions. He was very clear when it came to food allergies. If you have sensitivities to foods that are manufactured in the same facilities as the allergens that affect you, this may not be a safe bet. However, if that scenario does not fit your picture, Gerald was pretty confident they could accommodate most other allergy situations.
Here are a few good things to know:
- Each flavor has its own scoop ~ limiting the potential for cross contamination.
- There is a sink right on the cart to allow the Cast Member to wash his/her hands and equipment thoroughly before handling a food allergy order (or any other order for that matter).
- There is an allergen information sheet located at the cart that Guests can review if need be. This will provide a measure of peace or awareness needed before ordering. The store itself (located again in The Landing) has a more extensive binder of allergen information.
- The sorbet offerings are a perfect dairy-free option ~ made from fruit, water and sugar.
Remember that gelato typically has cream and milk as ingredients, so dairy may be a tough one to avoid. Sorbet, however, is just flavored water, fruit and sugar. I am actually sensitive to dairy, but was willing to pay the minor consequences that day. Of note, there is no dairy in sorbet. However, when it comes to egg allergies, the three flavors that have eggs on the cart include all the ones with chocolate listed above. It’s pretty obvious that Chocolate Hazelnut has…well, hazelnut.
There are no peanuts on the cart, but there are peanuts in the store.
Ready for a Frozen Treat??
So, are you feeling the heat? Need a treat to cool you down? If you’re at Disney Springs and want to soothe yourself with some deliciousness before your next pixie-dusted adventure, stop by the brand new gelato cart and enjoy a scoop ~ or two!
Remember – it’s located in Town Center where you will also find The Levi Store, Volcom and The Poutine ~ pretty much where Town Center ends and The Marketplace begins.
You can follow Vivoli il Gelato on social media:
- Facebook: @vivoliorlando (or Vivoli il Gelato – Orlando, FL)
- Twitter: @VivoliGelateria
- Instagram: @VivoliGelateria
~ Some Other Fun Facts ~
Thank you, Vivoli, for sharing these tidbits AND the treats with us!!
- There are 24 in-store flavors, eight on the cart.
- Raffaello Vivoli, who opened Vivoli in 1930, taught his granddaughter Silvana Vivoli the art of gelato making.
- The nostalgic black and white photos framed on the store’s back wall behind the counter are of the Vivoli family at the original store location in Florence. Each photo evokes a rich sense of history and brand longevity.
- For fun, Silvana’s favorite flavor and number one recommendation is Riso (rice pudding). Do YOU like rice pudding?
- Vivoli offers rotating monthly sundae specials and shakes based on seasonal ingredients.