The best ice cream in London

The scoop on the capital's best places for ice creams, sorbets and gelati

0

Comments

Add +

Check out our sticky-fingered guide to the best cold stuff in the capital. Think we've missed a great London ice-cream parlour? Do you agree with our choices? Use the comments box below or tweet your suggestions.

Black Vanilla

There’s nothing quite like an ice cream at the seaside. Sand between your toes, cone in hand and the sounds of the waves lapping at the shore in your ears. You won’t find that in Greenwich, but it does have water, boats and good ice cream. Black Vanilla’s second branch, offering 36 flavours of ice cream, is perfectly located at the centre of Greenwich's tourist hotspots: the Cutty Sark, the Old Royal Naval College and the indoor market. If you really want to get into the holiday mood, Black Vanilla also offers afternoon and champagne teas.

  1. 5 College Approach, SE10 9HY. 020 8858 3283.
More info

ChocStar

As the name suggests, Petra Barran’s sweet treatmobile is a purveyor of all things chocolate, including dense, cocoa-rich ice creams and fudgey brownies (which you can have in a sundae). The dark chocolate ice cream is our obvious go-to flavour, but there’s also tart raspberry sorbet, creamy vanilla and even Nutella flavours.

  1. Outside Neal's Yard, (Maltby Street), SE1 3NY
More info

Gelateria 3bis

Tucked between Neal’s Yard Cheeses and Monmouth Coffee, 3bis is definitely another feather in Borough Market’s culinary cap. There’s an emphasis on creamy, milky flavours, from panna cotta to vanilla custard. Classics sit next to experimental flavours (peanut butter, eton mess etc), with around 16 usually on offer. There’s also a running chocolate tap to enhance ice cream cups. If you’re lucky you can try one of 3bis’s rich blends just-frozen from the constantly churning line-up of gelato machines.

  1. 4 Park Street, SE1 9AB. 020 7378 1977.
More info

Gelateria Danieli

For superior sorbets and ice creams on Richmond Green, head to this dinky gelateria. In high summer the interior can feel as packed as a generously filled ice cream cone, with queues stretching out of the door. Choose from classic flavours like milk chocolate, pistachio or tiramisu, or opt for something a little more leftfield like the jammy ‘Bakewell tart’ or date, cinnamon and caramel. When not rushed off their feet, the friendly staff even invite you to try before you buy. There are other branches in Battersea, Kingston and the West End.

  1. 16 Brewers Lane, TW9 1HH
More info

La Grotta Ices

Kitty Travers’s tiny van is a rather unassuming vehicle for such a range of unusual ice creams with flavours that defy convention. She can usually be found pitching up at Bermondsey’s Maltby Street on Saturday mornings, and the ‘menu’ frequently changes depending on what ingredients Travers has sourced direct from farmers, from contacts or from foraging herself during the week. Elderflower, cucumber and sour cream, blackcurrant custard and peach leaf ice creams have all featured at some point, while a pink gooseberry and hazelnut crumble offering is one of her newer creations. And while the locations and ingredients change constantly, the milk and crème fraîche reliably come from Ivy House Farm.

  1. Maltby Street, SE1 3NY
More info

Oddono's

Could life for the mummies of Nappy Valley get any yummier? Oddono’s, an old-school gelateria of the highest quality, has just opened a fourth branch on the Northcote Road. Much like its other outposts, the counter takes centre stage, brimming as it is with 16 varieties of freshly-made gelato, from ever-popular chocolate, pistachio, or cookies and cream to more unusual seasonal flavours (green apple, say), though there are a handful of seats too. And while the first scoop costs £2.30, each extra scoop only costs an additional £1. If that isn’t an incentive to test-drive every flavour, we don’t know what is.

  1. 69 Northcote Road, SW11 1NP
More info

Nardulli

This small, simply decorated ice-cream parlour is handily located on the northern perimeter of Clapham Common. It’s a low-key, traditionally Italian affair, with a score or so of the more traditional flavours made by Lorenzo Nardulli and his small team. The ice creams here are smooth-textured and clean-flavoured – just like a proper Italian gelato should be.

  1. 29 The Pavement, SW4 0JE
More info

Greedy Goat

Tell someone who’s lactose-intolerant that they ‘can just have the sorbet instead of the ice cream’, and you’ll be lucky not to end up wearing what you’re scoffing. Instead, take them to the Greedy Goat. Four chums have got together to make rich, creamy goats’ milk ice cream in delicious flavours including raspberry and chilli, or pistachio with a drizzle of olive oil. There’s even one called Billy Vanilli. It’s easy to digest and low in sugar: try it at the Borough Market stall too, whether you’re lactose-intolerant or not.

  1. Jubilee Market area, Borough Market , 8 Southwark St, SE1 1TL.
  2. (Thu-Sun)

Map of ice-cream parlours in London

Popular food features

The 100 best restaurants in London

Feast your eyes on the top restaurants in London. See the full list here.

Best restaurants in London for...

Find the best restaurants for every cuisine in the capital. Check out the best restaurants in London for...

Cheap eats in London

Bargain bites can still be had in London – here are our critics' picks. Read more cheap eats

The 100 best dishes

Time Out's 100 favourite plates of food at the best London restaurants. Find London's 100 best dishes

See more popular food features

Users say

33 comments
paulinewright2
paulinewright2

I'm in the 2014 Eating and Drinking guide in the Ice Cream Parlour section, so can I be added here please. My ice cream comes from the amazing Marine Ices!


Sugar Mountain

Anato C
Anato C

If Gelup and Amorino are among the best ice cream parlours in London...

Sophie C
Sophie C

How is Gelupo not on here? By far the best ice cream in London

Baron S
Baron S

Can't fault La Gelatiera's listing, but you missed out the amazing Lab G in Brixton and Marine Ices in Chalk Farm - two of the best places in London and neither of them part of chains, unlike others on this list.

Aamir
Aamir

I actually read this review on Thursday afternoon, and Friday evening after work, thought I'd give your #1 a go, Amorino...If I'm honest, it was nothing special whatsoever, Yes their presentation is nice, but as far as flavour goes, I didn't find it anything special. It's a shame. The wife and I still do prefer Harrod's ice cream Parlour, and also Odonno's (Selfridges Brankch).

Christina
Christina

You did miss the best Gelato so far in London (and we did try a few). Tesoro on Goodge Street close to the Goodge Street Metro. Displayed in typical Italian Possetti the texture and flavour is outstanding! No surprises but true to the original Italian flavours. Addictive and highly recommended!

Anneka
Anneka

Comboco on D'Arblay Street in soho is the best! Awesome flavours with specials every week - the best thing is the smashing toppings concept - just check it out!

Jeshua Alexandre
Jeshua Alexandre

Marine Ices perhaps? Probably one of the oldest and best ice-cream parlours in London.

MJM
MJM

Only 1 place on the east list!!! Try Gelato Royale - Fieldgate Street, next door to Tayyabs. Home made and made good.

Emily
Emily

Hands down BEST gelato in the world is at Snowflake Gelato on Westbourne Grove. I urge you to review it!

Kate
Kate

How is Gelateria – 3Bis not on this list?! It's been around for 1 summer at Borough Market and will no doubt last many more. They use UK sourced ingredients like milk from Neal's Yard and fruits from Chegworth Valley and have a chocolate fondue fountain that pumps hot nutella into the bottom of your cone before your scoop goes on top. It is to DIE for! My favourite flavour is Eton Mess, and if the queues out the door don't convince you then the ice cream will surely speak for itself.

Claire
Claire

A new gelato shop has just opened in Hammersmith, it's called Zooba and it's on Shepherd's Bush Road..... The milk belgian chocolate flavour is mind-blowing!

Antoine
Antoine

Have you guys ever heard of Gelato Mio? These gelati are just the most delicious evere. back to basics with a homemade Strawberrry ice cream that tastes heavenly. Time to update your listings maybe? :)

andrea giusti
andrea giusti

I can help you. I'm a professional seller of ice cream products and machines. Best,

tanuja nayak
tanuja nayak

Sir, I want to learn some basics receipes of icecream. Will you teach me. I am planning nto open my icecream parlour,

Cemile
Cemile

ZAZA in canary wharf...yum yum!!! loved the kit-kat and the pistacchio...could wolf down several of those cones, one after the other....

linda
linda

ZAZA@ MELODIA DEL GELATO in Canary Wharf! the only place in London where you find ice cream patisserie....great small "finger food" version of ice cream for dinner parties or kids parties....tredy and elegant ...definately not the usual ice cream place.... have you ever tried campari-orange ice cream? or afrodisiac chocolate and orange???? ...or coffe with fresh cream......? the best ice cream ever......

Sofia
Sofia

I adore the mini cones and other patisserie gelato tha zaza' in canary wharf does. I bought lots of different shapes and flavours for my kids bdays and they loved it as well as the parents! Also, their chocolate, pistacchio and hazelnut are deliciussss, not to mention the typical napolitan "pastiera" flavour, they all have that creamy and velvety texture that only real italian gelato has!

mike
mike

honestly is good place to visit is alittle nice shop in golders green road a proper gelATO TO EAT TO SHOP NAME IS BELLA DEL GELATO GOOD PLACE TO VISIT FOR ICE CREAM AND PANCAKES I HAD A SCOOP OF FERERO ROCHER GELATO WAS FANTASTIC

Jim
Jim

I recently the Dairy Cafe in East Sheen. The ice cream tasted fantastic, apparently all made in the shop. Flavours taste really natural, the strawberry seemed to be full of fruit, vanilla tastes fantastic. Prices seem good value, £1.50 for a generous scoop. They also have home made cakes and good soups etc.

danny
danny

wow wow is a good litle place in golders green road ,a proper italian gelato , the display very presented just top quality i had a belgian waffle with ice cream for 3quid honestly is worth it good crepes and waffles at reasonable price the place is bella del gelato

domenico
domenico

bella del gelato golders green , a warm a nice little traditional italian ice cream parlour with authentic italian flavours ,any time i go there i am just confuse to see what dlavour shall i pick honestly is a good gelateria to vist

Nori
Nori

Just recently opened shop, called BELLA DEL GELATO, it is near to golders green station, it is very cute shop, all interior are so cool, and the ice cream are so wonderful i have never seen such a gorgeous display and presentation. it is home made ice cream and also taste is wonderful and always i find new unique flavour like green tea, chestnut, chill chocolate etc.. you must taste it !!

suzanne
suzanne

theres a reasonably new business near bethnal green tube station i pass on the way to work most days, called the Flava Lounge! Prices are good and the decor is really fun, more your retro american diner experience then a swanky outlet in selfridges, but great for a relaxed family treat i'd say!

mark
mark

there is a funny little shop around the corner from queensway station opposite kensington gardens i dont even know the name of it but it has the best ice cream ive ever tasted, i had pistachio but my girlfriend had the ferrero rocher flavour and it was unbelievable, we crossed the park again to buy another one. the one in holland park is also really good 'mio gelato' but a bit pricey.

ib
ib

there's a new sweet tooth in town...ZAZA' italian gelato ice cream in Canary Wharf Cabot Place. original flavours and Patisserie to go: take away mini ice cream in fancy packaging. a must for gelato lovers!

Molly hey
Molly hey

I think the ice cream is going to taste great.

roberto
roberto

that was a 100%italian gelato is in queens way ice skating i had a visit on the 10march2009,with some freind to do ice skating , but i just feel like i go there to eat gelato ,it does remember me when i go with my parents to sicily to enjoy our summer holiday and grab a scoop of gelato , well done queens ice skating gelato team

Paolo
Paolo

Gelato Mio in Holland Park is my favourite. Authentic Italian ice cream and great atmosphere. Worth checking it out (and now open till 11pm every night!)

Neal Hattersley
Neal Hattersley

On your advice we made it to F&M's Parlour. We had a knickerboker glory and a dusty road sundae. Both were very good indeed and of course at £10+ each they need to be. It was the combination of ingredients that made them, the ice cream itself, which turns out to be Minghella from the Isle of Wight, was a good English example, but not a patch on Danielli (see below). The service at the Parlour was also very English, 12.5% and nothing to show for it.

Neal Hattersley
Neal Hattersley

On a recent trip to Rome we visited the ice cream parlour recommended by TOut, as 'best in Rome' near the Trevi fountain. The product was magnificent, (Ok, we really did go back for seconds and sampled 4 flavours!) but it was very rich. Back in London, We just tried 5 flavours in a Sundae at Gelateria Danieli at Bentalls in Kingston. This was heaven and much more paletable and lower fat. Lots of nuts in the nut flavours. We are both ice cream fans and Danieli is seriously good in store, a contender for No1. I've never understood the fuss about Marine Ices, media hype over substance in my view.

ivan
ivan

scoop is my favourite, i met one of the owners, a truly insired genuine italian, that's what makes gelato icecream unbeatable!

aliciablumross
aliciablumross

@Baron S I too was kind of flabbergasted at these two omissions! And the super gorgeous Ruby Violet in Tufnell Park - who delivers too!