The first thing you'll notice at Black Dog Gelato's new Ukrainian Village storefront is the multicolored spread of gelato and sorbet, whose 20-some flavors range from the everyday espresso to the unusual sesame-fig-chocolate chip.
But look beyond the gelato case for owner Jessie Oloroso's most inspired treats: cookie sandwiches, gelato pops and house-made sodas.
Now that she has her own shop, she has the freedom use her gelato in creative ways. This means sandwiching scoops of blueberry between chewy oatmeal-raisin cookies ($3.75), and dipping subtly boozy whiskey gelato in chocolate and candied bacon bits ($3.75) to make a gelato pop.
Turn house-made Tang-lemongrass soda (inspired by its neon namesake) into a gelato float with a scoop of lemon-ginger, or try vanilla gelato with the watermelon-basil soda.
Two more sodas are in the works--cocoa nib-molasses-ginger, and a horchata-like almond-milk concoction--as are gelato cakes and pies, and gelato sandwiches made with Sicilian panettone and chocolate-brownie cookies. The next gelato pop will be strawberry dipped in dark chocolate and almonds.
And Oloroso plans to share more than just her frozen desserts: Come fall, she'll offer hands-on gelato-making classes to small groups--so you can have your gelato and make it, too.
Black Dog Gelato, 859 N. Damen Ave.; 773-235-3116 or blackdoggelato.com