Ballyclare Parlour Wins National Ice Cream Award

True Gelato in The Square in Ballyclare has won the ‘Best Newcomer Award’ for its vanilla gelato in the prestigious National Ice Cream Competition organised by the Ice Cream Alliance.

“Wow! What can I say! We are both absolutely overwhelmed and delighted to have been awarded 1st Place for our Vanilla gelato,” commented Karl Wilson, who co-owns True Gelato with his brother Ryan. “We entered seven categories and have also received diplomas for these other entries. This achievement will be a great addition to our True Gelato portfolio which we strive to continuously improve.”

The Wilson brothers have been in the newsagent, card and gift industry for 20 years in Ballyclare, Co Antrim. The True Gelato venture was born in 2017 through their yearning for delicious, unique ice cream. After many family holidays to Cyprus, Karl and Ryan developed a new affiliation and friendship with a local Gelato Parlour in Paphos. They loved the taste, the texture, the variety and the fact that this was potentially a new concept that could be launched back in Northern Ireland.

“True Gelato is a homemade artisan ice cream, freshly produced by ourselves on site in Ballyclare,” continued Karl. “We’re supporting local businesses from whom we purchase our milk and cream. Each variety is free from additives, preservatives, colourings, palm oil and vegetable oil.”

In addition to the parlour in The Square, True Gelato also has an events trailer and an Ice Cream Cart allowing the brothers to serve their gelato at parties and events. They currently create 53 flavours.

The National Ice Cream Competition is held every year by the Ice Cream Alliance (ICA), the UK trade association for the ice cream industry. Hundreds of products are submitted across thirteen categories ranging from Best Vanilla (84% of ice cream parlours rate this their best-selling flavour) to ‘Alternative’ category products which includes those free from the top 14 allergens, dairy-free, low-fat, high-protein, no-sugar, and others. The ‘Newcomer Award’ is for a business new to the sector (opened within last three years).

“Congratulations to Karl and Ryan Wilson and all the team at True Gelato,” commented Zelica Carr, ICA CEO. “There was very stiff competition. This category saw some outstanding entries and the judges were hard pressed to choose a winner.”

The National Ice Cream Competition has been running for 75 years and bestows a badge of quality and excellence on all those that win. It was judged by 43 experts over two days at the Ice Cream and Artisan Food Show 2020.

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