What Is Affogato?

If there’s one thing that Italian cuisine as a whole is known for, it’s exceptional attention to detail! In a traditional Italian meal, every course has a special emphasis. From appetizers to entrees and everything in between, there’s no end to the love and care put into each part. This is especially true when it comes to Italian desserts, which have given way to some of the most popular and noteworthy creations over the years. Affogato is a delicious option that we offer on our dessert menu, but what exactly is it? We go into more detail about affogato below!

Defining Affogato

Coffee-based drinks in Italy are more plentiful than you might think! While some caffeinated creations put more emphasis on the coffee part of their drink, affogato flips that on its head by combining the hottest and coldest elements of desserts. Typically, affogato is made by combining the extreme chill of vanilla gelato or sorbet with the toasty, warm elements of a shot of espresso. Naturally, the ice cream melts into the espresso shot over time, leaving you with a flavorful milkshake that tastes just like a sweet coffee!

History of Affogato

Like many unique and original Italian dishes, the origins of affogato are largely unknown. However, it’s a much more recent invention than some of the other famous dishes and cocktails that have graced our palettes. There’s not much that’s known about its true origins, but we can pinpoint when it rose to popularity. During the rise of ice cream production in the 1950s, people were finding new and innovative ways to make their frozen treats better. This phenomenon is likely what gave way to Affogato’s creation.

Variations of Affogato

Whenever a new dessert becomes popular, it’s likely followed by a series of variations that stretch the recipe’s creative limits. Traditional Italian affogato will follow the above blueprints – a scoop of vanilla gelato and a shot of espresso – but versions created by the United States aimed to pair different ice cream flavors with the shot. Some versions add garnishes like chocolate chips, mixed nuts, and coffee liqueur to make the recipe sweeter, while others swap out the vanilla gelato entirely for flavors like coffee, coconut, oreo, or caramel. 

Try Mare Oyster Bar’s Affogato Today

If you’ve looked at the dessert menu for Mare Oyster Bar before, you’ll probably have noticed that we have our own version of affogato! Our ice cream creation aims to blend the traditional elements of Italian affogato with amaretto – a sweet Italian liquor – and some delicious biscotti as a garnish! It’s the perfect sweet treat to pair with the delicious Italian and seafood options that we have to offer. Get the best dining experience with every course when you make a reservation with us today!