Food & Wine
A German schoolteacher who spent just two days learning to become an icecream maker is now one of New Zealand's best.
The Gelato Caffe in Hawera has won two gold medals and a silver at the 2012 Icecream Awards, delighting co-owners Holger and Annett Zabel.
Their European-styled cafe will celebrate its two-year anniversary in Hawera next week. This year marks the first time they have entered the awards, run by the New Zealand Icecream Manufacturers Association.
The couple had no previous cafe or restaurant experience when they came to town from Germany for Mr Zabel to work at South Taranaki District Council.
Having set up shop in the main street, Mrs Zabel, a former schoolteacher, had to be taught how to make the 40 different flavours their business sells.
"I needed to learn, we had a guy here from Italy, he taught me in two days," she said.
"This first year was trial and error – getting feedback on what you can improve, so this [award] was quite good."
The couple were pleased to learn that of the four samples they sent in, their black sherry gelato and strawberry sorbet had won gold medals, while their hazelnut flavour earned a silver.
"We tell everyone, of course," Mrs Zabel said.
The samples were sent to Auckland where they were not only taste-tested but had to meet strict guidelines for content and texture.
The cafe will be sent a plaque and stickers to display their success.
"You have to be patient to prepare the gelato, two years to improve product, change a bit here and there," Mrs Zabel said.
- © Fairfax NZ News