A new frozen dessert shop has opened in Plano doing what it calls "hand-crafted" Italian gelato. Called OMGelato, it's located at 3829 W. Spring Creek Pkwy., at the northeast corner of Coit Road, in a former Indian market at #103, where it's making gelato via an unprecedented technique: liquid nitrogen.
Liquid nitrogen is a molecular gastronomy technique which, when applied to liquid, freezes the liquid instantly. If it's being used to make ice cream, the process causes the fat and the water molecules to stay small, resulting in ice cream with an extra-creamy consistency.
OMGelato founder is Mehrdad Tabrizi, a native of Iran who says his previous career was landscape engineering, and who wanted a change. He settled in Plano because he has a brother who lives here.
"I had my own shop in Iran, and it was successful so I decided to open one here," he says.
OMGelato has more than 50 flavors for gelatos and sorbets, and more than 50 different choices of mix-ins and toppings.
There are three chocolate options — dark, milk, and white — plus classic gelato flavors like pistachio and dolce latte. Tabrizi also does nontraditional options like bubble gum, cookie butter, and apple pie.
Some of his flavors summon his heritage such as cinnamon, ginger, and saffron red rose. He also does sorbets, cakes, milkshakes, espresso drinks like lattes and cappuccinos, and special teas, such as the herbal tea with saffron, rose, and cardamom. "It's a tea you have never experienced before," he says.
Liquid nitrogen ice cream is the signature of Creamistry, a California chain that has seven locations in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
But that's ice cream. Gelato is not typically made with liquid nitrogen. Gelato is made in a regular churning machine but churned at a slower rate than ice cream. It has more milk and less cream than regular ice cream. The result is a less airy, more dense, creamy texture than ice cream.
This is not to say you can't make gelato using liquid nitrogen, but it isn't done in Italy, birthplace of gelato.
"The flavor you get is more delicious than regular ice cream," he says. "You get more flavor in a single spoon."