Italy in Arizona

I discovered a magical place in the east valley. Have you ever heard of that movie, Midnight in Paris? Yeah. It was like Mid-Afternoon in Italy via Mesa, Arizona.

After S.O. and I went to pick up the Lootcrate box from our old place because I had completely forgotten to update our address, S.O. wanted to thank me for the awesome gift (if you’re with a nerd, give em’ this gift, they will love you forever) and treat me to anything.

Of course, I had wanted to try this place called Gelato Dolce Vita and Grocery for at least two weeks now after researching foods and restaurants near our new place.

Okay, so here’s the thing about my S.O., while S.O. likes to try new foods and places, S.O. really appreciates stuff we’ve already discovered, which means I had to be extra enticing. I started off with, We should get gelato because it’s hot. This is especially true in Arizona, and also S.O. loves gelato. S.O. immediately thinks of another gelato spot we go to, but I suggest the new place. Since it was my choice, we headed over anyway.

We got there and it’s in this little plaza, which is a good sign because we have a theory that most plaza places are delicious. As we approached the location, we heard Italian, another good sign because this pretty much seals the deal of authenticity.

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Gelato Dolce Vita and Grocery is split into two sections, the gelato and the grocery/deli. We hit up the gelato first. Oh so creamy, and way better than the usual spot.

Then we walked a couple of steps to our right to see the deli/grocery. All the Italian imports! I wanted to buy everything, the pasta, the tomatoes, the olives, the truffles. It was amazing.

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But we couldn’t keep our eyes off of the deli meats and cheeses, which was when we knew we had try it. We were in Italy after all. S.O. didn’t even care about having celiac. So we both had paninis, or is it paninos?

IMG_20170423_061210_109I had the Dolomito Panino, which has speck, arugula, and asiago. S.O. had the Parma Panino, which has prosciutto crudo, mozzarella, and tomatoes. The were both delicious. It’s such a simple meal if you think about it; Italian bread brushed with olive oil and filled with deli meat and cheese, but the quality man. The quality is everything. The speck was so soft it almost melted in my mouth. Yeah. They don’t tell you that it’s supposed to be that way at your local grocery store deli.

We didn’t leave completely empty handed. We bought a jar of anchovies because anchovies are one of my new favorite things and risotto because it’s always good to have on hand. As you can tell, we cracked open the anchovies once we got home. Um. Yeah. It doesn’t smell fishy! The flavor explodes just before it’s about to go down. I can’t wait to try the risotto.

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We came back the next day and ended up trying their pasta, meat and cheese platter, and cannoli. I forgot to take a pic of the meats and cheeses as well as the cannoli because my stomach was quicker than my picture taking skill reflex. I promise both was yum.

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The three of us split the tortellini so don’t worry that this is the actual portion size. Imagine that times three. Not surprising, that was yum as well. You know how pasta sometimes feels super heavy? Nope. Not this one. It was light and perfectly seasoned. Again, if you look at it, so simple, but ingredients and execution was spot on.

We love it so much that we are trying to decide who to bring there next.

Moral of the story? Please go to Gelato Dolce Vita and Grocery! You’ll feel transported and happy and completely satisfied with whatever you decide to eat.

Gelato Dolce Vita and Grocery, 5251 E Brown Rd #104, Mesa, Arizona 85205

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