Every year we all make New Year’s Resolutions. By the end of the year, we attempt to accomplish the one thing we’ve been meaning to do. Imagine being Melissa Bow, creator of Via Gelato, who in just about one year went from ice cream food truck to a brick and mortar in Kaimuki, Oahu. She not only accomplished building her own local company here, but she also has us thinking about our past, present, and future. Here’s why.

Via Gelato
Front entrance to Via Gelato

Back in 2013, Bow opened Via Gelato’s first store in Kaimuki. She focused on flavorful nostalgic and interesting takes on gelato/sorbets that many of the community and Hawaii, in general, would be able to connect to. We may have had that aunt who we’ve been lucky enough to get the juiciest mangos or enjoyed the local tastes of pineapple and other tropical produce. Classics that you may have not pictured together until Via Gelato created flavors like Banana Lilikoi or Pineapple Ginger were a tasty surprise, especially to me who’s only really ventured out to Chunky Monkey or Raspberry Sorbet.

Via Gelato
MANGO-RAMA inspired wall art

Via Gelato opened its second store on Ward Avenue back in December 2017. Unfortunately, it seemed like a short-lived journey, though you can still get the same generous Aloha attitude at their original location. Think to now and how Hawaii needs to see how important it is to support local. You can say that a lot of people are hardworking. It’s not difficult to see that. There are many well-deserving individuals that have fusion ideas based off of their identities and their lives. We don’t find too many that have worked their way up from food truck, to farmer’s market stands, to a storefront. Let alone those who not only use local ingredients but are also conscious of their impression and their own personal community. Everything at Via Gelato is made from scratch and you can tell that right away with the smooth texture and active smiles on everyone’s faces.

Featured resuable tote bags

Second best to only the quality of Via Gelato’s desserts would be Bow’s decision to use their iconic ceramic bowls and reusable metal spoons for her dine-in crowd. I really like this idea to remove unnecessary plastic in the world, even if it is biodegradable and compostable plastic. If that doesn’t cut it for you, Via Gelato also sells trendy reusable canvas totes that promote a greener living. Being kinder to the environment for future generations is a theme within their website and there is even a page dedicated to this mission.

Left: Guava, Madarin Basil, & Mountain Apple Sorbets | Right: Almond Cookie, Black Sesame, I “heart” Brownies, & Chocolate Gelatos

The current Summer Specials include Mandarin Basil and Mountain Apple Sorbet. All of their fresh fruit options taste like a concentrated spoonful of fresh fruit. I was lucky enough to be able to taste the Mountain Apple, Guava, and Mango Sorbets. If you don’t want to miss out @viagelatohawaii features their daily menus. Flavors change up with interesting choices. Who would’ve thought that there would be a gelato with mango bread or an Almond Cookie Gelato? I remember growing up with both of these in my home. It took a creative mastermind to make them into a brand new successful dessert.

Via Gelato
Price board for cups and cones

You are able to choose up to 2 flavors with whatever size you get. This time around I got the Almond Cookie and the Black Sesame Gelato (also one of my all-time faves!). There is also a chance to try vegan options. During another visit I got their Haupia Sorbetto. Interesting texture since it was as smooth and as creamy as a regular gelato, just no dairy! Now I’m just hoping for many more visits and scoops of gelato to come.

Via Gelato
1142 12th Avenue
Honolulu, HI 96816
Ph: 808-732-2800

Lindsey Mau

Forever hungry, I’m always trying to satisfy my cravings with foodie finds in Hawai’i. I am down for both trendy and traditional eats that I read about online or find through friends. Find me in the city, probably eating some noods or at least wishing I was. If you are in need of a boba bud, a cool new restaurant, or cozy comfort food, I’m your gal!

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