A gelato tasting room, a coffee lab and a bar will all be a part of the gelato factory that Dolcezza is building near Union Market at 550 Penn St. NE.
The 4,000 square foot warehouse (it used to be a wholesale flower market) will be the new home base for the D.C. company, which has been expanding throughout the area. The tasting room's bar will seat 20 people, and tastings will be available between noon and 7 p.m. each day — customers will get the chance to sample gelato flavors as Dolcezza is trying them out.
The gelato itself will be reminiscent of soft serve, according to a press release, because the factory will serve it in ceramic and glass bowls (usually it has to be tempered for customers to taste it in a cone or a cup). The company is playing around with such flavors as cucumber tarragon gin and avocado honey orange this summer.
Dolcezza used to do its production in a small Georgetown facility. Brian Miller of Edit Lab by Streetsense is designing the factory (that's the same company behind such recent projects as Daikaya and Red Hen). There will be skylights, glass garage doors, high ceilings and a mezzanine so visitors can look down on the gelato-making process.
The factory, which also will include a coffee training station, will be available for rental for special events. There's room for between 50 and 100 people. It will open later this summer.
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Dolcezza Mosaic [Photo: Missy Frederick/Eater.com]