Nestled into Roscoe Village is the quintessential neighborhood ice cream shop, complete with white and green tiled walls and dozens of flavors served out of those unattractive but charmingly old-fashioned white plastic tubs. Only open during the warmer months and housing a mere seven stools, Mario & Gino's is a "stop in and grab a cone" place more than one to sit and get comfy.
Mario & Gino's also holds the unfortunate distinction of selling the most expensive gelato in the city (if not the country). It carries two brands of gelato, Ciao Bella and Al Gelato, which respectively sell for $3.25 and $2.75 a scoop. That means you're paying a staggering $6.50 for a double scoop of Ciao Bella. In this case, quality isn't on par with the cost.
Though it comes in tasty flavors like key lime graham, burnt caramel and chocolate chocolate chip, it's bought in bulk and the freshness that's so vital to gelato is lacking. That said, as long as you're not looking for the most authentic Italian replica, Mario & Gino's gelato is full of flavor and may even be worth the occasional splurge.
Average cost: $21-$30
Centerstage Reviewer: Laura Brown