This review begins with a story.
Back in September, I reviewed Ben & Jerry’s Pumpkin Cheesecake Ice Cream and rated it a 10. When I published my review, one of our loyal readers (the one guy who reads this) acknowledged that Ben & Jerry’s Pumpkin Cheesecake was excellent, but that Talenti Pumpkin Pie was even better. Well, shit. I didn’t even know Talenti Pumpkin Pie existed.
Drunk Female and I had already discussed ice cream reviews with respect to the Pumpkin Power Rankings. Ice cream, relative to your typical junk food, isn’t even fair. It’s milk and sugar and cream and of course it’s delicious… it’s ice cream. Even the worst ice creams are still better than most junk foods. We agreed not to go nuts reviewing all the pumpkin ice creams, but… Talenti! Talenti is a brand of gelato I thoroughly enjoy, and I needed to review it. No problem… we would review Talenti Pumpkin Pie once I could find it, and then that would be it.
Except I couldn’t find it. One of my finest skills, though a completely misguided use of my energy, is my ability to locate dumb food before anyone else. Follow me on Instagram (@JunkBanter) and I will prove it daily. But Talenti Pumpkin Pie… this son of a bitch eluded me for much of the last month. I had just about given up, but discovered a product locator on Talenti’s website – the very first thing a wiser man would have checked. This was my final, last ditch effort. I set a reasonable search radius:
One search result. And it was thirty minutes off the beaten path from my normal commute home. Ugh. This will be my hail mary; I’m conceding defeat if I come up empty. Sure enough, the gelato was nowhere to be found in the freezer aisle. I swallowed my pride and asked the young man stocking yogurts if he could check in the back. He was gone for 10 minutes, but returned with something in hand. “Sorry, it was way up on the top shelf.” Talenti Pumpkin Pie! I thanked him profusely, but told him I needed to leave immediately because this would surely melt on my 30 minute drive home. The older woman working the seafood department (who totally wanted me) called me back, filled a giant bag with all the ice should could spare, and wished me a good night. She can totally get it. And off I went… simultaneously proud and ashamed.
Dear God. I almost wanted to defy the hype on this, but I can’t. It’s perfect.
Ok, so where to begin? This gelato is flavored like pumpkin pie, a dessert you probably love or you don’t belong here. But it’s even better than the real deal. If you filled a pie crust with this Talenti Pumpkin Pie Gelato and served it on Thanksgiving, your guests would compliment that your “Pumpkin Ice Cream Pie” is better than your family’s time-honored pumpkin pie recipe. Which reminds me:
Ingredients: Milk, Sugar, Cream, Pumpkin, (Blah Blah Blah), Vanilla, Cinnamon, and Nutmeg. Two things make this Talenti Pumpkin Pie a standout. First is the obvious – the exceptional use of the spices (cinnamon and nutmeg). We’re talking some potent pumpkin pie here. The second thing I noticed was that this flavor was richer and creamier than many others I’ve tried, and then I noticed that straight butter was an ingredient. Yep, butter. I checked Talenti’s website and confirmed that butter isn’t normally an ingredient added to their gelato. It makes the base taste like you’re eating pie crust, even when you’re not. This gelato does include the occasional piece of pie crust (and it’s a real treat), but you won’t miss it if your spoon comes up empty because of how flavorful the base is.
And now the dilemma. I already gave Ben & Jerry’s Pumpkin Cheesecake Ice Cream a perfect 10. How does this measure up? Simply put…it’s better.
Don’t get me wrong. Ben & Jerry went with a pumpkin cheesecake flavor, and that goddamn graham cracker swirl is what the Gods eat. Talenti went with a pumpkin pie flavor, and they absolutely killed it. I enjoy each of them in different ways, but I’m gonna favor Talenti Pumpkin Pie. If Ben & Jerry’s Pumpkin Cheesecake is a perfect 10, then Talenti Pumpkin Pie is a 10.24 – the highest score I can give it that still technically rounds down to 10 on our halfpoint scoring system. It’s not going to dethrone Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Pie Spice Cookie Butter for me, but it’s the last Pumpkin Pie ice cream/gelato I’m ever gonna need.
Until the next one comes out.
How Much That Lady in The Seafood Department Wanted It Rating: 7 out of 10
How Much That Yogurt Boy Thinks I’m A Total Loser Rating: 9.5 out of 10
Overall Rating: 10 out of 10
*Edit: I found this gelato within walking distance of my house 2 days after this review was published.
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