I've always wondered about the history of how humans decided to eat certain things. Like lobsters--who was the first brave dude to decide that this:
was somehow worthy of eating? (Pretty sure that the lobstrosities from Stephen King's The Dark Tower books are a direct result of the author's status as a Mainer. Dad-a-chuk, and all that.) I can only imagine that some courageous proto-human was taking an afternoon dip and saw a lobster scuttling along the seafloor...and then somehow made the leap that the enormous bug would be delicious if conquered, cracked open, and consumed? I dunno.
And oysters. How...when would...I mean, Sarah finally got me to appreciate (and yes, really like) oysters a few months ago, and I'll for sure eat them with zeal these days. But how..how did the first person (again, proto-human) decide to shuck one open and slurp it down? Did Homo Habilis even have vinegar around to whip together a mignonette? And who finally brought the horseradish to the party, anyway? Good on you, horseradish guy.
Rambutan. JEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ rambutan. I've definitely mentioned them before but HOLY CRAP do they terrify me. WHY WOULD YOU EAT THAT?!? Don't get me wrong, I love our rambutan sorbetto. Tastes like tea to me, but we all know how subjective flavors can be. I can only imagine that the culinary background on these is something like this:
Rambutan falls on proto-human's (let's call him Bill) head, splits open.
Bill sees what just hit him, glistening, terrifyingly translucent, probably throbbing if you get too close to it. Bill runs away in terror.
Bill's proto-dog, too desnse to be afraid (c'mon, we all love dogs but they're hardly mental giants), tastes the rambutan, decides it's delightful, and wolfs (heh) the whole thing down. Proto-dog, unsurprisingly, promptly horks the pit up.
Bill reconsiders his stance on the rambutan issue.
So yeah. Food's just weird sometimes, but all in all generally awesome. Sometimes though, like something out of a youth reading horror novel, the scariest stuff is presented as the most innocuous and wholesome when really its truth is pretty terrifying (I'm looking at you, mega-corporate food "producers.") Anyway. Let's not rant, huh? Eat weird food. Does a body good.
For some of you gelato lovers, our exotic flavors seem as
strange as Willy Wonka’s 3-Course Meal Chewing Gum. But sampling our Zucca or Acorn Squash Gelato
won’t turn you into a pumpkin or squash, and we don’t have any strange
Capo-lumpa workers that will burst out into song and roll you away.
Traditional flavors like Stracciatella, Pistacchio, and
Nocciola are in most customers comfort zones.
But Fall is the season of change!
So step out of your comfort zone and try something like, Peperoncini (Hot Pepper), Zucca (Lancaster Longneck Pumpkin), or Sweet Potato with Pecan
Remember, Capogiro employees are pretty generous when it
comes to giving samples, so give it a try before you order the same old thing!
Beer: is it the best thing out of Germany ever? Pretty much going with yes. Well. Garden gnomes do come a pretty close second, so we'll call beer German creation #1 and garden gnomes #1A. They're both delightful all year round!
If you were really my friend--and we are friends, right?--you'd buy us both plane tickets to galavant off to Munich, because it's the opening weekend of Oktoberfest and I could sure stand to get out of town for a minute. It's definitely on my bucket list, along with going to the Phillies' Spring Training and eating Rocky Mountain Oysters in the Rocky Mountains.
Given the sizable German diaspora scattered about this great commonwealth, you'd think there would be some pretty epic Oktoberfest celebrations. There are a few to be sure, but not nearly as many as I would have thought. So! Munich it is.
Since the Munich celebration is the originator, it's predictably monstrous in scale. Somewhere between six and seven million people will stop by during the 16 days the festival lasts this year, and they'll consume upwards of seven million liters of beer. (Which...something about that seems off. I mean, a liter of beer is definitely a big pour, but most people are only having one? Not buying it, somehow. But what do I know?) And all of that beer will be brewed in Munich exclusively and with strict adherence to the super old school German beer purity laws known as Reinheitsgebot.
So! C'mon. Spoil a guy a little and let's fly to Germany for the weekend. Beer and sausages and pretzels and smart women in dirndls...I promise not to embarrass anyone by trying to scrape all the German I used to speak out of the back of my head.
They're heeeere! Fall flavors are rolling in, along with this awesome hoodie weather (thanks Tuesday Monsoon!). Today is the first day for Zucca (Pumpkin) Gelato, and it's oh so amazing. Also on the menu today, we have Coquito (Vietnamese Cinnamon with Coconut and Rum), Bourbon Butterscotch, Burnt Sugar, and my personal favorite, Pear Sorbetto with Wild Turkey! Seriously, what could be more scrumptious for your palate? As Sean blogged earlier, Fall is the best time for flavors at Capogiro, as well as the greatest time to stroll through Center City. Arts abound in Rittenhouse this week, and we've been seeing people from all over in their sleek fall fashions, coming in for some savory treats or warming up with a hot espresso drink. Best of all, everyone seems to be super laid back and relaxed that the summer is finally over. Come down and people watch tonight with us in our outside seating. If I were you, I'd get the Pear and Butterscotch with a double shot on the side.
On Sunday afternoon the staff at Capo13 is feeling as
beautiful as the weather. We
thought of a few corny riddles and jokes and we wanted to share them with
you! You might not get them if you’re not a
1.) What does our Anacardi gelato say when it sneezes?
2.) Where does Sesame Seed gelato go on vacation?
3.) What did the Aranciata Sobertto say to the vegan?
Orange ya glad I’m dairy free??
4.) What did the customer who had burnt sugar, marshmallow
and nutella say?
“I want s’more of that!!”
5.) The sandwiches in
the display case were bored, so what did the other sandwiches say to the vegan
“Hummus a tune!”
So there you go, you may not have lol’d but we did when we
came up with them!
Come in and tell us a joke of your own, we love to laugh!
We here at Capogiro are nothing if not unreasonably generous (wink, wink), and that's why our panna is complimentary. Customers see our "Free Panna" sign and shout "What's panna?" "Who's panna?" "Why is panna in prison?!" Well, folks, panna is whipped cream, and he's totally innocent. The burning question among us kids that work here, though, is whether it should be sweetened or not. Is panna still panna if it's sweet? Some say whipped cream is NOT sweet and that sweetening it constitutes a name change. Chantilly cream is sweet, but does that mean it's NOT whipped cream? Should our sweet panna be called panna Chantilly? What is whipped cream if not a delicious sweet topping to make your espresso, hot chocolate, and gelato taste even more delicious? If a cream falls in the forest and there's no one there to hear it....my head hurts. Whatever you wanna call it or however you wanna eat, it's just good, right? I mean, if we want to be technical, whipped cream in Italian is panna montata, but that's just a mouthful. Apparently in 16th Century Italy, those nutty Humanists called it milk snow (neve di latte) and that's about the cutest darned thing I ever heard.
The demise of summer is in the air, which means our summer
flavors are leaving with the geese. But
don’t be sad, the hibernation of the summer flavors only means that our
fantastic, fall flavors can step into the spotlight! During these next few months Peach and
Watermelon are leaving us, only to be replaced by Squash and Apple.
Personally, Fall is my favorite season for weather and for
food. The weather is perfectly cool,
leaves are falling, pumpkins are growing, and cider is stewing. To fit the season, Capo starts serving gelato
flavors like Zucca (longneck pumpkin), Butternut Squash, Sweet Potato with
Pecan Praline, Eggnog, Molasses, Chai Tea with Milk, and Earl Grey. We also have new sorbetti like Mele (apple),
Apple Cider, Pear, Cardamom, and Carambola (star fruit) and Orange.
Eventually, we’ll start up our soups and hot beverages. Some of our soups include Carrot Ginger, Red
Lentil Farro, Minestrone, and Split Lentil Farro. Fall hot beverages include Hot Chocolate,
Cioccolato Caldo (a thicker, Italian-style hot chocolate) and my all-time
favorite, Apple Cider.
The summer sun will be gone before you know it, so make sure
you stop in to hang out with your favorite flavors one last time before they
hibernate. Keep an eye out for our fall
flavors towards the end of September and on!
You know us. We're always looking for something new and cool to offer to you. We were out front on the artisanal lollipop thing before it was cool (Capo13 has a bunch of them if you've got an oral fixation to address!). Wicked awesome lil bit spicy jalapeno chips? Yeah, we were there first, too. (By the way, it's totally coincidental that these two artisanal delights are from Seattle and Stowe, Vermont, respectively. Has nothing at all to do with me having been a cook in both those towns over the years. Nope. Totally not related. Swearsies.)
So now, given that CapoPenn is everyone's favorite gelateria with a bar, we're hooking up our train with Spodee Wine from White Mule Farms in New York. Spodee is a unique, fortified wine that's sort of a throwback to old recipes for...well. For humble, Depression-era hooch, really. They can explain it better than I can, so watch this for a hot second:
They're fun folk, them Spodee people.
So what's Spodee taste like? Well, awesomeness, for one. But it's also a little sweet, a little herbal, a little syrupy--in a good way. And definitely a little boozy, which speaks to the inner Bukowski some of us harbor.
What can you do with Spodee? Shoooooo...what CAN'T you do with Spodee?! (I mean, don't go mopping the floors with it or anything. It's versatile, but that's...man, why would you DO that? Little insulting. Come back to me, brah!) Our favorite so far is for sure a Spodee and Chocolate frappe, with just a wee-bit of Luxardo Maraschino liqueur to round things out a little bit. And we'll be featuring it all weekend if you're of a mind. But Spodee and Sodee (erm, Coca Cola)? Yep, that's an instant classic. I actually like Spodee and seltzer, myself. Little light, little sweet...it's good stuff. (I have a soft spot for drinks that are both refreshing and boozy.)
Yeah. Summer's over in West Philly for sure. We're bumpin and grindin and back to doing our thing. We LIKE busy! So. Git on in.
Late Summer is definitely melon season, and we have all kinds of melony sorbettos to whet your whistle. Sweet and savory, these flavors are by far my favorite of the year. Watermelon might be gone soon, so come down today and try to snag some of the last of the summer's juiciest sorbetti. We've also seen Pepino Melon this summer, a sweet Latin American delicacy that had our mouths watering. Right now though, the best melons of them all are chilling in the case, Honeydew and Cantaloupe! The Cantaloupe sorbetto is by far the best thing ever. We combine fresh melon with Viex Carre Absinthe from Philadelphia Distilling. The absinthe really rounds out the flavor of the cantaloupe, making for the worlds most perfect treat Nom.
The diversity of Philadelphia and it’s tourists is best
observed by working full time at a Center City café in the summer.
People came into Capogiro from places that I have never
seen, only heard or read of , speaking with accents so beautiful and
interesting to listen to. American, Italian,
French, German, Asian, Middle Eastern, African, Australian, Austrian, Russian, and so
many others. These people from every corner of the world came into our café
from this summer’s heat looking for cool and refreshing gelato.
At Capogiro, I offer samples of multiple flavors to every
customer that comes in.
Rich flavors like Cioccolato Scuro, fun flavors like Single
Malt Scotch, traditional flavors like Pistacchio, and unexpected flavors like
Avocado. I get rich customers, fun
customers, traditional customers, and unexpected customers. One of the reasons I enjoy my job so much, is
that the samples I offer are different everyday and the people I serve are
different everyday. In other words,
there is always something new to taste, to try, to experience. I enjoy conveying those different experiences
to my customers. More interesting
though, is the samples that I receive back.
For every gelato sample I give, I receive a sample of
culture in return. I receive snatches of
native languages, glimpses of exotic fashions, understanding of generations,
and insights to ethics. But no matter
how diverse, every single person falls in love with Capogiro Gelato.