Paciugo Gelato: Assorted Gelato Flavors

Down in Hermosa Beach, there's a cool, spacious shop that serves gelato worth seeking out. Paciugo Gelato (pronounced “pa-choo-go,” if their signage is to be believed) offers a dizzying selection of 32 flavors. They line up all the usual suspects — chocolate, caramel, sea salt, banana, peanut butter and strawberry — but it's oddball combos like green tea chocolate, basil coconut and pepe nero (black pepper and olive oil) that make Paciugo stand out. Oh, they also do a killer maple bacon gelato.

Paciugo Gelato: Assorted Gelato Flavors in the Case

Paciugo's gelato is smooth and placid, though some flavors reveal a grainyness that veers closer to ice cream. The standalone flavors are moderately intense, not overpowering but not weak, watery or too sweet à la Paradis.

Paciugo Gelato: Interior

Among the outliers, the balance of flavors is usually well done though the saffron in the chocolate-orange-saffron gets drowned out by bits of candied orange rind and one more dollop of basil wouldn't hurt the basil-coconut.

Paciugo makes a nice rose-flavord gelato. Mild and milky it's much mellower than the version at Saffron & Rose.

Their maple bacon gelato is actually one of the best bacon ice creams we've tried in LA, rivaled only by Coolhaus' bacon ice cream. The sweet maple base is perfectly offset by a hint of smoke, and a modest sprinkling of bacon crumbs ties it all together and prevents it from becoming monotonous.

Paciugo Gelato: Rose Gelato

Paciugo also operates another outpost, in Thousand Oaks.


LA Weekly