We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Relaxed refined vegetarian dining”
Review of Black Vanilla - CLOSED

Black Vanilla
Price range: $4 - $8
Cuisines: Italian
Description: At Black Vanilla we focus our passion and creativity to create our multi award winning, handcrafted gelato and sorbetto using the finest, fresh ingredients. Our dedicated team of chefs bring obsession and a wealth of experience to every spoonful, something evident from the first taste.
Restaurant details
Description: At Black Vanilla we focus our passion and creativity to create our multi award winning, handcrafted gelato and sorbetto using the finest, fresh ingredients. Our dedicated team of chefs bring obsession and a wealth of experience to every spoonful, something evident from the first taste.
Bristol, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
31 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Relaxed refined vegetarian dining”
Reviewed March 15, 2013

Small and cosy space with friendly and mid-formal service. The key is the great creative and beautifully prepared vegetarian food. Well worth our special trip to London to check it out and we'll definitely be going back.

Visited May 2012
Helpful?
Thank gorge-scrambler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

64 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    29
    21
    6
    5
    3
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Amazing gelato”
Reviewed February 10, 2013

Pistachio tastes like you are eating pistachios....likewise the mango flavour. Also great coffee, went to the Greenwich branch and is now a favourite place

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
Thank Joel C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
235 reviews
162 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 128 helpful votes
“Great ice cream.”
Reviewed November 7, 2012

It boasts the best coffee in London, not that we put that to the test because all I wanted was the ice cream - it's expensive, but big portions by the same token, and lovely flavours. Well worth it just for that. Cakes and pastries looked expensive and a poor relation to those at Paul Rhodes just round the corner.

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
Thank Donkey63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
95 reviews
56 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
“Definitely worth visiting”
Reviewed November 5, 2012

I have only been to the branch of Black Vanilla in Blackheath village, but my goodness it is fantastic. The coffee is brilliant, whether you want a strong cup of black coffee or some sort of milky creation. It's all good. The gelato is always fantastic. The brownies are great. They even do a decent bowl of soup. Always make sure I stop here when I'm in the south east now.

  • Visited October 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Ian G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Level Contributor
28 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“"We make the finest gelato outside Italy"”
Reviewed September 29, 2012

According to their website, that is. And to that I 'ice-cream' a wholehearted "YES" (excuse the pun; the gelato there was indeed so good and my brain has been on vacation since).

So, this was what happened: my friends and I went to Greenwich in early September, we had a fantastic lunch at a place on Nelson Road and was headed to the Greenwich Market - our stomachs were full and we weren't looking for dessert - when we walked past a window with a plaque beside it that not only boasts rave reviews by the Evening Standard and The Guardian but also claims that it is the winner of three awards at the Great Taste Awards 2012 (no, we have no idea what award that is). Why not, we said.

So, we stepped inside and were greeted by a couple of (cute) servers (dessert technicians?). There were either eight or ten flavours in the display case: your typical fares like Vanilla and Hazelnut as well as interesting concoctions like Chili Chocolate (decorated with a piece of giant chili) and Mojito. We each decided to go for single scoops in a cone; I can't remember if they were £3 or £4 each. Each scoop was abundantly-heaped with gelato (the size of two to three scoops back in Malaysia) but at about the same price (after conversion) so that already made us very pleased. One friend and I had the Lemon Meringue while another had Pistachio (that costs an extra 50p because the nuts came from Italy). We stepped outside to enjoy our gelato and we weren't able to move any further, so overwhelmed were we by the intense, wonderful flavours that flooded our taste-buds!

Seriously, we ended up sitting on the base of a lamppost right outside the shop, licking and slurping and making near-obscene yummy noises while pointing inwards, not-so-subtly recommending the place to passersby (we sent in 14 people; I counted). And, get this - after we were finished, we unanimously agreed to go for seconds!

So, back in we went and this time I chose the Coconut (decorated with half a coconut still in its shell - it was fantastic and full of coconut shavings), one friend had the Hazelnut (which turned out to be so delicious and laden with whole hazelnuts) while the other had TWO scoops of Pistachio. This time when we left, one of the servers cheekily bid as farewell with a "see you guys later".

Three things to highlight:

The choice of flavours may differ from day to day (we found out because we went back again a day later - yes, we travelled from our apartment on Judd Street near Russell Square and took the train for half an hour all the way to Greenwich just to eat their gelato once more before our flight home).

Don't even think about settling for the Bambino cone, figuring you could get some gelato cheaply - the cone is so tiny you need to hold it delicately between your thumb and forefinger or you'd crush it to smithereens. I mention this because we encountered three separate people who were shown (and advised against ordering) the cones.

Do not - I repeat, DO NOT - go for the Chili Chocolate flavour. I tried it. I was intrigued but can you blame me? I'm from South-East Asia, used to murderously-spicy cuisine, and this tub of gelato with the Hulk-sized chili was just begging me to meet its challenge and give it a smackdown. It was gooey and coco-ey and awesome until 30 seconds later WHEN YOUR THROAT IS ON FIRE. I was completely dished, put in my place. Okay, fine, I'm exaggerating a bit but, unless you are used to and/or enjoy spicy food, skip this.

Another thing: I highly recommend the service at this place. I was traveling with my Muslim friends and we were sampling the flavours. One friend wanted to try a strawberry concoction whereupon the server informed her that it contains Amaretto. That was savvy of him; we appreciate that.

I'd say "spread the word on this gelato gem" but I selfishly wish this place would remain not-too-famous - too many visitors means there'd be longer queues the next time I come. And yes, I do plan to come again, many more times until I die or this place shuts down, whichever comes first.

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank BabsMY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Black Vanilla also viewed

 

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing