Today is Tèo Gelato Day

Wish local gelato maker buona fortuna in world competition

Photo by Tèo Gelato/ Facebook

When the North American leg of the Gelato World Tour was held in Austin in April, gelato maker Matt Lee of Tèo Gelato, Espresso, and Bella Vita was one of the three people chosen to compete in the finals in Rimini, Italy in September.

In recognition of that accomplishment and in order to give Matt Lee a rousing send-off, Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell has proclaimed today as Tèo Gelato Day. Matt is throwing a party on the shop patio from 5-7 this afternoon with free scoops of gelato flavors for guests, including the peanut butter, chocolate, and hazelnut concoction called Nuts that got Lee into the finals.

They'll also be drawing the name of the lucky customer who will win a trip to Italy to cheer Matt on in the competition. The winning customer does not have to be in attendance at the drawing, but does have to be 18 or older in order to accept the plane ticket.

Photo by Jake Holt

Since placing in the North American preliminaries, Matt Lee has been hard at work crafting a second flavor to enter in competition. "Italians don't like things to be too sweet and they like flavors with nuts, so I decided to do a flavor with New World nuts - pecans, since they don't have those in Italy," Matt Lee explained. Lee also pointed out that the novelty of pecan use in Italy could make a good story angle for international food journalists covering the competition.

Determined to work with other Texas food artisans as much as possible in the development of his second competition flavor, Matt Lee visited the Navarro Pecan Company in Corsicana to check out their operation. Navarro supplies pecans for the famous Deluxe Fruitcake from Collin Street Bakery in Cosicana as well as several nationally-known ice cream and gelato makers. Matt will be using Navarro's lightly salted pecans in a butter pecan-like gelato with a swirl of nuts in whiskey caramel sauce. The whiskey in the sauce is Balcones Single Malt from Chip Tate's Balcones Distillery in Waco – talk about a native Texas flavor!

Drop by Tèo this afternoon, cool off with a scoop of gelato, and wish Matt Lee buona fortuna on his quest to be named a world gelato champ!

Tèo Gelato Day Party
Wednesday, Aug. 13, 5-7pm
Tèo Espresso, Gelato & Bella Vita
1206 W. 38th, 512/451-9555

The Best of Austin: Restaurants ballot is here! Nominations can be made now through Monday, July 18, at midnight. Vote now at

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Gelato World Tour
Gelato World Tour in Austin
Gelato World Tour in Austin
Italians on a mission to share gelato with the world

Virginia B. Wood, May 15, 2014

More by Virginia B. Wood
Top 10 Savory Bites
Top 10 Savory Bites

Jan. 1, 2016

Open Secret
Open Secret
The not-so-hidden pleasures of dine

Dec. 25, 2015


Gelato World Tour, Matt Lee, Teo Espresso, Gelato & Bella Vita, Rimini, Italy, Lee Leffingwell, Navarro Pecan Company, Balcones Distillery, Balcones Single Malt Whiskey, Chip Tate

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Behind the scenes at The Austin Chronicle

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle