Amorino: The Little Angel With Whom You Fell In Love
By Nicolette Martin
Amorino, meaning “the little angel with whom you fall in love,” is a gelateria famous for its rose-shaped gelato and is a must-see on the list of things to do in Boston. Offering a unique gelato specially made in France, the business strives to make each visit memorable.
Cristiano Sereni and Paolo Benassi, creators of the chain, are two Italian friends who wanted to bring delectable gelato to France. The two wanted to set their business apart from other gelaterias, which is why they came up with the practice of scooping gelato into a rose shape. By opening their very first Amorino shop, Benassi and Sereni were able to accomplish their goal of introducing unique gelato to the country of France. But they did not want to stop there—next on the list for expansion was Boston.
Meet Léa Sasportes. Growing up in Paris, Sasportes had always been interested in entrepreneurship. She left her career in biotechnology and thought taking ownership of Amorino’s Boston location would be a great opportunity. Bringing a little bit of France to Boston, Sasportes chose to open up shop on Newbury Street.
“When I tried it in Paris, the quality of the gelato was so good; I just fell in love with the gelato they were making,” said Sasportes.
Previously managing three Amorino shops in Paris, Sasportes wanted to make a move to the United States. She was attracted to the quality of the Italian gelato and the Parisian atmosphere of the Amorino shops, and she decided to open one in the city of Boston. Visiting many different locations in the United States, including Miami, San Francisco, and New York, Sasportes was drawn to Boston.
“I love Boston. I like the life here,” said Sasportes.
She believed that Boston offered great business opportunities for a gelato shop like Amorino. Saportes compared rent prices, competition, customer reaction to the gelato, and consumption among many different areas and was convinced Boston was the best choice.
Originating in France, the Amorino menu had to be extended to accommodate the Boston clientele.
“Amorino is all about the gelato, especially in Europe. But here, because coffee is very popular, we had to extend the menu. Here we do much more coffee and pastries than in France,” said Sasportes.
Sasportes chose to bring this shop to Newbury Street because there is a wide variety of customers, including business professionals, tourists, and families.
“Newbury Street is the perfect location because you have all the customers represented,” said Sasportes.
Sasportes wanted her shop to be located in an area where there was high foot traffic, and she believed that Newbury Street would be the perfect location. Sasportes wanted her shop somewhere that was always filled with people, no matter the hour of the day.
Each Amorino shop shares the same warm color scheme fashioned by wood and brick walls, fixtures, furnishings, and decorations. This cozy atmosphere makes customers feel comfortable, welcome, and at home.
“This is a typical Italian atmosphere and represents what you would experience in a very small shop in Italy,” said Sasportes.
Amorino’s signature dessert is its rose-shaped gelato that the business is known for.
“Every time you form the flower figure, you get a big smile on the customer’s face,” said Sasportes.
The employees are required to learn how to scoop the gelato into this structure, as all of the customers look forward to seeing the final display. In order to achieve the appearance of rose-shaped gelato, a special spatula is used that allows the employees to scoop the gelato into a petal-like figure. Due to this innovative technique, there is no limit to the number of gelato flavors a customer can receive.
“We have 24 flavors, and you can fit as many as you want. You can even fit all 24 if you wanted to,” said Sasportes.
There is wide variety in the famous Parisian gelato flavors featured in Amorino shops. The flavors include hazelnut, amarena, caramello, and mango, just to name a few. When you taste the chocolate hazelnut gelato, it is as though a cold spoonful of Nutella is exploding in your mouth. The inspiration behind all of the flavors comes from a special team that does taste testing in Paris.
“They first make sure they can find good quality, and once they get a good one they go for it,” said Sasportes.
Typically, all of the gelato flavors stay the same, with the exception of seasonally changing flavors. Sasportes claimed there is a new pistachio sorbet flavor in the making.
Many people come into the shop and snap pictures of the beautiful gelato, wanting to share their experience with friends through social media. Social media heavily influence today’s society, so creating both visually appealing and delicious gelato is a brilliant marketing strategy for Amorino.
Sasportes plans to eventually expand to other Boston locations, including Cambridge and Copley Square, where a summer kiosk will be opening. The team is anticipating a shop opening at South Station as well.