Dining Out: Dolce vita at Coney’s Cones

August 25, 2015 Anna Spivak
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Placed in a perfect little spot along the Coney Island Boardwalk near West 12th Street, Luna Park’s reinvented sweet treat storefront, Coney’s Cones, brings the best of Italy to Brooklyn and the sweetest Coney view to a scoop of gelato.

The man behind the cold creations, Daniele Dal Sasso—gelato expert and Vicenza, Italy native—credits the shop’s unmatched freshness to simple ingredients and natural flavors.

“We [did not] start with many products,” Dal Sasso said about opening the gelato shop—that previously operated as an ice cream parlor—in March of last year. “We produce just natural. Everything comes from Italy and we make it here. We mix all of our raw, basic ingredients—fresh milk, fresh cream, sugar—and don’t have any artificial colors, or artificial flavors inside. The secret is just to make it fresh every day.”

Dal Sasso, who started in the kitchen as a chef in Italy before opening a gelato shop with his family, is happy to bring something a little different to the well-known “fried foods” that Coney Island offers. And boy is it good.

Priced at $3.50 for a small size cup or cone with one scoop, $5.00 for a medium cup or cone with two scoops and $6.00 for those who dare tackle a large cup or cone, equipped with three scoops, all 12 flavors on the menu are worth a try and might even have you saying amore.

First we sampled a classic pistachio—a refreshing and original take on the flavor with just a hint of nutty, sweet flavor. Chocolate, a fan favorite, followed suit and was creamy, delicious, and rich with chocolaty goodness.

Switching gears for the fruit lover’s palate, we sampled both an amerena yogurt and a raspberry flavored gelato. The amerena yogurt boasted tart and sweet flavors, working together to send your taste buds into overdrive. The refreshing raspberry tasted like a handful of the actual fruit, only creamier and a little bit messier.

To top off our sampling, we went for the Milano cookie flavor—which we heard was another crowd favorite—and a cappuccino flavor; both creamy, rich, and incredibly flavorful.

IMG_3837 Like Dal Sasso mentioned, the fresh ingredients play a large role in the taste of the gelato and the dessert differs from ice cream in that it contains less butterfat, has 40 percent less air, and uses a special pasteurization process that gives it that distinct, creamy texture.

“I think people in Coney Island are used to the fried stuff; the hot dogs and the pizza and all of that,” said Brand Manager for Luna Park Angie Morris. “We wanted to introduce gelato to this demographic, to this market, because it’s something new and different. The great thing about gelato is that you’re indulging in it, but it also has a nutritional value to it, so you don’t feel that after you eat it, that you’ve gained about 10 pounds or so. It’s very refreshing.”

In switching from ice cream to gelato, Morris said the shift has been “well received.”

“People come in and think that they’re getting ice cream, but they’re coming out with a whole new taste and experience,” added Morris.

For Dal Sasso, customer satisfaction is the key.

“I think good food is good for everyone,” he said. “All I care about is [the customers,] when they walk out, they have a smile.”


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