Italians do it better, according to judges at this year's Sigep, the International Exposition for Artisan Gelato, Pastry, Confectionery and Bakery production held in the Adriatic town of Rimini. Thirteen nations competed at this year's 33rd edition wrapping up on Wednesday. Representatives from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Italy, Morocco, Mexico, Spain, Switzerland and the USA competed by creating delicacies to express the theme Fruits of the Earth and the Sea.
Each nation chose five professionals as representatives included a team manager, captain ice cream maker, pastry chef, ice sculptor and for the first time this year, a chef. Over four days contestants challenged each other, putting in 2,500 hours of working, cooking and creating. An ice-cream cake, decorative table services, fanciful take-away packaging, and cone alternatives made of ice cream, ice and chocolate were fruits of the competitors' imaginations as they chipped, whipped and swirled their ways towards the final awards ceremony.
Gelato maestro from the Friuli region Leonardo Ceschin posted on his social network that the idea of entering a competition without knowing the ingredients was an "intriguing undertaking" that he did with great pleasure. The 60-year-old ice-cream maker, whose shop Esquimau has long been a point of reference in his home town of Pordenone, won the gold in the Gelato category.
Other winners were Ernst Knam from Milano for his chocolate sculpture, Francesco Falasconi from the town of Tavullia near Rimini for his ice sculpture and chef Filippo Novelli from Turin. There to support the Italian team was chocolate pastry expert Andrea Olivero and team manager Pierpaolo Magni who, together with Diego Crosara, whipped the team into shape. All events were covered through direct streaming and bilingual commentaries in English and Italian.