Scarsdale Welcomes Not One, But Two New Gelato Spots

Dig into the cool, creamy decadence crafted by relative newcomers Mimi’s Gelato and Omni Caffe, both in downtown Scarsdale.

Last summer, we didn’t have these two gelato-scooping gems in Scarsdale, and that alone makes the summer of ‘24 pretty sweet already.

Not all chilly, creamy confections are created equal. In the genre of frozen dairy desserts, gelato aficionados appreciate the craveable qualities that differentiate it from ice cream.

“You have to be very careful with gelato: the crystallization, the temperature, and it has to be fresh,” says Tal Campana, co-owner of Mimi’s Gelato in Scarsdale. “People don’t know why it tastes so good, just that it tastes good.”

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Gelato has a softer, denser texture than ice cream, with less air in it, less milk fat, and a slower churn rate. It’s usually served at a warmer temperature, too.

Don’t be fooled by any mislabeling, either. The difference is noticeable in these details.

For those who appreciate this delectable dairy dessert, try these two shops that weren’t available as a palatable respite the last time we regularly waded through the thick, humid air under a sun bearing down at 90-plus degrees Fahrenheit.

Mimi’s Gelato by Martine’s Fine Bake Shoppe

51 East Pkwy A, Scarsdale; 914.881.1144

Step inside Mimi’s Gelato to make your day’s most delightful decision: Which swirling mountain of exquisite mouthfeel perfection will you choose?

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There’s the dramatic drizzle of black sour cherries, their drips mingling with dark chocolate strands cloaking the sweet cream in the amarena stracciatella. Then there’s the marshmallow cloud flavor, which, despite its playful presentation, tastes as ethereal as its name — airy, not cloying, with a blue hue that comes from spirulina.

“We didn’t want to use food coloring,” Campana says. “We try to do things on the less sweet side. Sugar masks a lot of things, and we want the quality ingredients and flavors to stand out.”

Gelato
Mimi’s gelato case

Other staple flavors that can’t be excluded are the pistachio, hazelnut, malt chocolate, vanilla, and mint speckled with chocolate. Different fruits star in the sorbet and vegan options, like the recent cantaloupe, sending your senses to a midsummer field for a juicy bite plucked at peak ripeness. Flavors change seasonally, so the offerings may be different with each visit. In mid-June, customers filled their cups or Spanish-imported cones with lazy layers of whisky cream, passionfruit cheesecake, and blackout cookies ‘n’ cream.

Opened in September 2023 next to Starbucks and the Scarsdale train station, Mimi’s Gelato (not to be confused with Mimi’s Coffee House in Mount Kisco) is the real deal. Campana and brother Yuval Golan’s shop of scoopable succulence won “Best New Gelato Shop” in Westchester Magazine’s 2024 Best of Westchester awards. And it’s not just because the siblings run Mimi’s beloved parent shop, Martine’s Fine Bake Shoppe, across the street. Designed with German kitchen equipment and an Italian display case, Golan created an opulent interior ambiance with marble, burnished gold and a ceiling brightened by pendant globe lights. Customers can top their gelato with the chocolate fountain and buy to-go containers (350 cubic centimeters or 11.8 fluid ounces for medium, 500 cc/16.9 fl ounces for large, and 750 cc/25.4 fluid ounces for extra large) to keep in their home freezers. For a gift, Mimi’s sells transparent bags with two stemmed gelato dishes.

Mimi's gelato cup
Mimi’s pistachio cup

For a month before opening the shop, a gelato master tested and retested the recipes. Freshness is key for the gelato made in-house daily with natural ingredients, free from preservatives, artificial colors, and artificial flavors.

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“As soon as we make it, it’s out,” Campana says. “As we did with Martine’s, we want it to be the best — no compromise on taste, freshness, ingredients to lower costs or because of supply.”

Hours: Open noon to 10 p.m. Monday to Thursday and noon to 11 p.m. Friday to Sunday

Omni Caffe

60 Garth Rd, Scarsdale; 914.362.1230

Opened in January of 2024, Omni Caffe specializes in Italian coffee, baked goods, and more — the more being top-notch, house-made gelato, among other delicacies. This café comes from those who run Omnipak Import Enterprises, an Italian food and beverage importer and distributor.  “We do the gelato ourselves and import the ingredients,” says Florent Muca, one of the partners. “My favorite flavors are pistachio and hazelnut. Oh, and vegan dark chocolate; it’s amazing with raspberry. Sometimes we switch flavors, depending on what people like.”

Designed with a modern aesthetic, with marble, gold accents, and wood for warmth, the café offers a bar for chatting with friendly staff, plus small round tables. The drink menu is detailed on chalkboards, and the whole café is brightened through the large storefront windows overlooking Garth Road.

The gelato master at Omni is Ciprian Vicol, who hails from the Naples region of Italy. “Every day, I make something new,” Vicol says. He enjoys the experience of interacting with customers, looking them in the eye, and chatting.

Gelato
Ciprian holds an Omni Caffe pistachio hazelnut cone.

Omni offers at least eight flavors, starting with the favorite standbys of pistachio, hazelnut, chocolate, stracciatella, and vanilla. There are always a couple sorbets, too, like lemon, strawberry, and raspberry. If the flavor and creamy texture aren’t enough (how is that possible?), you can request rainbow or chocolate sprinkles, chocolate chips, or crushed nuts to top it off. Try the gelato in a cup, waffle cone, sugar cone, or cone cup.

For a decadent jolt of energy, note that Vicol makes a beautiful affogato, the espresso-gelato pairing that’s a match made in heaven. Go for the hazelnut.

There’s just no comparison when it comes to gelato and ice cream, Vicol says.

Gelato’s slightly warmer temperature than ice cream’s frozen status means the flavors pop more. When too cold, the tongue misses the full flavor explosion. “And with less water, the texture of our gelato is so creamy,” Vicol says.

Affogato
Omni Caffe affogato hazelnut

Hours: 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Thursday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, and 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Related: Where You Should Be Eating Ice Cream in Westchester Right Now

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