Life is tough for ice cream shops in Taipei. Many businesses can’t sell enough ice cream to cover costs. Sadly, the delicious OVOV in Taipei’s Da’an district (one of the most expensive parts of the city) is no longer with us. Best of luck to the owners in their new endeavors!
Located in the fashionable Zhongxiao Dunhua shopping district, OVOV Gelato serves up gourmet European-style gelato in style. This tiny, blink-and-you’ll-miss-it shop pumps out some big flavour!
OVOV mainly sells ice cream to go, but it also has a few barstools so you can sit down and eat in the shop. The storefront is small and simple, but doesn’t have the casual atmosphere of a standard mini-shop. The decor reminds me a bit of an elegant wine bar.
The menu outside the door shows the flavours of the day. Today’s menu includes: mango passionfruit, mixed wildberry, kiwi, pure yogurt, lemongrass-pineapple, chili chocolate, Fererro Rocher, buttered whisky, coconut lychee, Bailey’s Irish Cream, honey lager, and feijoa (a tropical fruit I’ve never heard of before).
OVOV also has professional coffee machines, so you can enjoy a hot black coffee with your gelato.
At $80 NT per scoop, OVOV is not cheap, but the average price for gourmet handmade ice cream in Taipei seems to be about $90 NT per scoop, so it’s not especially expensive, either.
The shop only offers 12 flavours at a time. Quality over quantity!
The gelato all looks delicious. You can tell just from looking at it that the texture is smooth and soft, not icy. All of the flavour options appealed to me, and the shop allows samples, so it was difficult to choose! First I tried the lemongrass-pineappple and chili chocolate flavours. Lemongrass-pineapple was sweet-tart and very tasty, but I felt that it would taste even better and more unique if the lemongrass flavour were a little stronger and the sweetness a little lower. The chili chocolate combination is quite unusual in Taiwan, but it’s quite popular in the West. The spicy kick of the chili is the perfect complement for the deep, warm flavours of the dark chocolate. OVOV’s chili chocolate gelato is very unique, with an especially concentrated dark chocolate base. When you take a bite you taste the bittersweet chocolate first, and the spicy chili follows after.
OVOV also offers a buttered whisky flavour. It reminded me of the signature whisky honey soft-serve at Milk Beard, so I tried a sample to compare them. OVOV’s buttered whisky gelato is a little sweeter than Milk Beard’s ice cream. The whisky flavour isn’t particularly assertive, and the alcohol taste is undetectable. It’s more remeniscent of butterscotch or caramel. The honey lager gelato had already sold out, but there was a mouthful or two left in the dregs, and my friend was curious, so he asked for a sample. He said it tasted very distinctly of beer!
As a coconut fanatic, I was immediately excited when I saw the coconut lychee flavour. After trying a sample, I ordered it straight away!
The coconut lychee gelato had exceptionally good texture, thick and dense and silky-smooth, without any trace of fruit pulp or ice granules. The flavour is well-balanced, and the mild coconut milk and sweet lychee taste very natural.
Between the two of us, my friend and I probably sampled every flavour in the shop, and the final conclusion was unanimous: the coconut lychee and chili chocolate flavours were the best! My friend couldn’t choose between the two, so he just bought them both!