Gelato: A feast for the eyes

Gelato - a delicacy that's not just for 16th century Italian aristocrats any more.
CBS News

(CBS News) A serving of gelato doesn't last long under hot studio lights - nor when it's placed before anyone with a sweet tooth. Allen Pizzey found plenty of those in Bologna, the city that's the birthplace of Gelato:

La Grassa - "the fat one" - may seem an unflattering nickname for a city with the oldest university in Europe. But the sobriquet is actually a compliment.

Bologna is the gastronomic heart of Italy, a place where food is an art form.

And nothing epitomizes it like the delicacy that was born here: Gelato.

The serving area of a gelateria is a feast for the eyes. "A quick one" on the way home from work here isn't a drink - it's a gelato.

So naturally, Bologna is home to the first ever "gelato university."

Term papers here are hands-on production.

Gianpaolo Valli has been teaching for twenty-five years. "We pasteurize at 85 degrees, we cool at four degrees centigrade."

Students come from around the world, looking for a way to beat unemployment, or just looking for change.

Vince Cavallaro spent 50 years in the tailoring business before enrolling.

"Because I would like to make a good Italian ice cream and bring it to Australia," he said.

Another attraction is profit margins. It costs less than two dollars to make a pound of gelato, which can sell for up to $15.

Technique can be learned in a month. But perfect gelato needs more than a recipe.

This assignment of the day was a basic flavor - not as easy as it sounds.

"We have a mixture," Gianpaolo tells them. "Ten different kinds of stracciatella."

The coffee break is a tasting session, and pointers from teacher Pietro Bianchetto on customer relations.