All Behold the Naia

There comes a time for each and every one of us where we need to sit back, look around at where we are and realize that, goddamit, some Americans got something right for once. This is the experience that I have every time I walk in to Naia, your friendly, properly-done gelato spot in the Bay Area. There aren’t a ton of them and if that’s what keeps them getting so many of their flavors dead on awesome, then so be it. It does after all give me reason to wander up to North Beach. I admittedly have yet to visit the one in the Castro, although I have hit up the Berkeley one.
The flavors are really to die for. If you’ve had gelato in the US, then you know how crappy it can generally be. The folks who started up this chain thought to themselves, “Crap, gelato is freakin’ awesome in Europe. Why does it suck so bad in the US? Let’s see if we can change this.” And change it they did. In typical California fashion they just ran with the idea above and beyond anything that I’ve ever had in Europe. I mean, have you ever seen persimmon, green tea, or Guinness gelato there? No and you should. Oh yeah, that’s right, I said Guinness gelato. They do it around St. Patrick’s day.
Sometimes the occasional flavor is a bit of a miss or a bit chalky or just not there, but they try things and I like that. Oh and if it seems like I’ve written about them before, I have, right here. The reason I’m writing about them again is a) I have that nifty photo down there that I took using the bomb ass wide and b) we went to a tasting of their winter flavors. These are overall quite good. Some are even excellent. But it’s all a good reason to sign up for their mailing list as they did this free for all on the list. Yeah, that’s right. Awesome gelato for free. While the staff can sometimes have the appearance of having been skateboarding by the shop and thinking, “Huh? Help wanted? Well, I’m skateboarding here, but okay, I can scoop some gelato for awhile.” they are generally pretty mellow with no attitude and happy to dish out the the cold stuff that makes us all go “nyum nyum nyum”.
All Behold the Naia