Dense, velvety sorbet made on site at Gelateria 3Bis

“It’s about balance,” Gianmarco explains as he peers into the churn, observing with an expert eye the paddle on its mesmeric revolutions. Round and over, round and over it swirls through the pale, rippling mixture as it spirals, spools and thickens into sorbet. “The rapport between fruit and sugar and water—that is what makes it.”

He lifts the lid in anticipation and sure enough, therein lies a fat, smooth, creamy column of sorbet that, only 10 minutes previously, was an unpalatably beige mix of water, sugar and rough chunks of ripe banana.

If Market Life was OK! Magazine and banana sorbet a celebrity papped leaving Harley Street, the before and after shots would be an editor’s gift. Mercifully, however, this story couldn’t be further removed. 

The only ‘scoop’ relevant here is the large plastic one Gianmarco deftly uses to transfer the glistening plait of sorbet into the chilled steel vessels you see at the counter. The whole process is hypnotic: like the whisking of egg whites, its whirlpooling from liquid to solid commands attention as much from sheer fascination as from the need, on the maker’s part, for constant vigilance.

Dense as velvet
Even now, after months of working the machine day in, day out, Gianmarco is transfixed from beginning to end. His diligence pays dividends. The sorbet slides effortlessly off the spatula into the tub, dense as velvet yet light as chiffon when it reaches the tongue.

The sourcing helps of course: sweet, scarlet Kent strawberries, bananas from Paul Wheeler—not home grown, but brilliantly sourced—and alphonso mangoes from India which, Marco says, make for the best sorbet, being rich in the natural sugars ideal for breaking down frigid whole fruit into something soft and voluptuous.

Still, having been present at the birth of a new batch of banana, we cannot overlook the expertise of Gianmarco and colleague Marco. We recommend three scoops, one of each, served straight up in a fresh waffle cone, whisked out into the sunny street and devoured with gusto, immediately.