Cool Off 2012: Coolato Gelato

Isabella is lovin’ her Pistachio & Mint Chocolate Chip Gelato

Ready for the second in a series of Cool Off 2012? We’re in Downtown Knoxville for another favorite place where lines can get long on hot days: Coolato Gelato.

OK.  So I said I would write about ice cream for this series, but if you just have one taste of gelato or sorbetto, you’ll be happy you did what your mom used to tell you to do:  Try something new!

Gelato is called “Italian ice cream” — a cold, frozen treat with less than 50% of the butter fat and half the calories of premium ice cream since it’s made with milk instead of heavy cream.

Outside seating on Gay Street — downtown

Coolato Gelato’s on Gay Street is in the newly renovated WROL building —  and the folks at Coolato make their refreshing gelato on site: 18-24 flavors each and every day!  Manager Cherryl Meuret says they start pouring the milk into gelato machines around 8:00 AM and then “keep her going” throughout the day, adding traditional products from Italy for flavor and texture.

Speaking of flavors, take a look at these tempting names: Banana Puddin’, Pear & Feta, Almond Joy, Mascarpone Caramel & Pistachio, Root Beer Float, Moonpie, Fleur de Sel, Chocolate Raspberry, and Ooey Gooey — just to name a few! You stand in front of a case filled with metal tubs holding colorful, enticing gelato and try to make a decision! Someone creative dresses up these mountains of good stuff just to make it even harder to select the one you want.  Take a look at these three beauties!

Birthday Cake Gelato

Peanut Butter & Jelly Gelato

Watermelon Sorbetto

Coolato’s has a Dog Friendly Patio! And here’s something fun: dogs get a free gelato when they bring their family!!! Dog Gelato is even on the menu!

This is one lucky dog: free Dog Gelato for bringing his owner!

Ordering can be tricky since there are so many choices, so many sizes. You can order gelato Piccolo, Mediano, or Grande (small, medium or large)! More choices await like Gelato Cake or Spaghetti Gelato — gelato “pasta” smothered with strawberry sauce and topped with coconut!

Abby takes your order with a smile!

Coolato Gelato is a ‘gelateria’ — sells gelato but also offers coffee, pastries, paninis, and other great treats . . . like sorbetto made with water and fresh fruit instead of milk. Still a cool-off treat, but lower in calories!

Inside or out, Coolato Gelato is a great place to gather!

If you’re thinking I’m so hot I’ll just dash into the store on Gay Street for a yummy gelato, you’d better hurry!  Lines get long on hot summer days. But workers are patient and accommodating.  Just ask for a little sample and ponder what you want this time.  You’ll be back for another time when you can try something new.

Take our word for it: you won’t want to miss out on one of downtown Knoxville’s coolest treats!

What’s to Like: Coolato Gelato

  • Delicious gourmet flavors of cold, cold gelato served in cones or cups
  • Free tasting samples on tiny plastic spoons!
  • Live music on Friday nights
  • Outdoor tables so you can watch the people go by
  • Dog friendly patio
  • Award-winning restaurant — and not just for gelato!

2011: Metro Pulse Knoxville’s Best Frozen Dessert

2010: TripAdvisor #1 Restaurant in Knoxville

2010: Official Italian Ice Cream for the Cooking Channel Truck Tour

<a href=””><img alt=”Coolato Gelato on Urbanspoon” src=”” style=”border:none;padding:0px;width:130px;height:36px” /></a>


Coolato Gelato

524 South Gay Street

Knoxville, TN 37902


About Oh, the Places We See

Met at University of Tennessee, been married for 47 years, and still passionate about travel whether we're volunteering with Habitat Global Village, combining work at Discovery with pleasure, or just seeing the world. Hope you'll join us as we try to see it all while we can!
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2 Responses to Cool Off 2012: Coolato Gelato

  1. cmmoxley says:

    Love this place. Used to love it more, though, when they served wine. Alan, the one with the sweet tooth, would get a gelato and I would get a pinot grigio. But they stopped selling wine because too few people bought it. Sigh.

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