Simply Affogato. {my favorite espresso dessert}

Espresso Affogato. So simple and always delicious, it is literally gelato “drowned” in a shot of espresso.

Years ago, before we took our first trip to Italy I had an affogato in the U.S. and I’ve never forgotten it. Hot & cold, bitter & sweet- it was the perfect mid-afternoon pick me up!

I thought for sure it was an Americanized dessert pretending to be Italian. But while living and traveling in Italy I saw (and tasted) them everywhere we went.

For research, I pretty much have to try one every time I see it on the menu. I’m always interested in how each restaurant presents their affogato. My favorite variation was at our local ristorante, Borgo di Vione in Basiglio.

Made with their Torroncino Semifreddo, it is a delicious cylinder of gelato mixed with a tiny bit of crunchy bitter almond brittle. This affogato variation is not on the menu, but if you ask for it they will make it for you. I love it because it doesn’t melt as quickly as a simple scoop of gelato and also because I love crunchy  bits in my gelato. Yum yum yum.

One of us drank our espresso, the other one spooned it up… #yum

A photo posted by Heather | A Merry Feast Blog (@merryfeast) on


Here’s an easy way to bring a tiny taste of Italy into your kitchen this week.

Espresso Affogato Ingredients:

1 scoop of Gelato

1 Shot of Espresso


  • I love using espresso cups for an affogato at home.
  • Freeze your bowl or espresso cup ahead of time.
  • Pre-Scoop your gelato into the frozen cup and freeze a few minutes more.
  • Try different flavor combinations. Vanilla is classic- but I have had pistachio and caffé and they are delicious.
  • Let espresso cool just slightly. You still want it hot, but not so hot it immediately turns your gelato into a puddle.
  • Pour the espresso over the gelato and eat immediately.


Now I’m off to search for a torroncino semifreddo recipe to try so I can replicate Borgo’s version! If you go there, tell Marco hello and please please please have some risotto for me too while you are there….

Buon Appetito!

xo- Heather

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