Twenty four degrees in the shade. Spring in Tenerife has morphed into hot summer, when any physical activity results in rivers of sweat.
The Spanish mainlanders have yet to arrive and the golden skinned, shorts and tee-shirt clad people on the streets in Puerto de la Cruz are mainly Canarians.
As a friend is visiting so we take the day off and decide to spend the morning on the beach. Instead of heading to Playa Jardín in El Puerto or our favourite, Playa Bollullo in La Orotava, we drive a short way along the coast to El Socorro in Los Realejos.
There are only a handful of other sunbathers on the black sand beach, plus a few body-boarders taking advantage of some spectacular wave action. After two hours the heat of the sun defeats us and we return to Puerto de la Cruz for lunch at Al Amir. Our friend doesn’t eat meat and Al Amir’s meat-free Middle Eastern delights are delicious whatever your eating preferences.
By the time we finish the it’s still very hot and we decide we need something else to cool us down; an ice cream.
There are plenty of ice cream parlours on Puerto’s streets, ranging from the classic Il Pinguino on Plaza Charco to gelato and frozen yoghurt joints.
But as we stroll slowly on a circuit from Plaza del Charco to Paseo San Telmo and back to the harbour, none really get us excited. It’s not their fault, the ice cream looks good but we want something different… even though we don’t know what that is.
We’re about to settle on dependable Il Pinguino when I remember crowds of young Portuenses outside Freddino on Saturday night.
Freddino was a small artisan’s ice cream parlour at the top end of the plaza. Clearly Freddino had been very successful as it is now a ‘big’ ice cream parlour with indoor and outdoor seating.
One look at Freddino’s counters and it’s instantly clear why.
One is full of artisan Italian ice creams. They look good, but these aren’t what has us behaving like rabbits caught in the headlights when we’re asked what we’d like. Another counter has a revolving tray of cakes, tarts and churros that all look as though they deserve to be scoffed pronto.
Next to the tray of cakes is a cabinet full of the sweetest looking ice creams. Colourful ice cream balls sit on contrasting ice creams in semi-circular glasses. They’re decorated with latticed chocolate, sauce and goodies like lemon chocolate wedges.
Each looks exquisitely delicious and choosing one is a nightmare. In the end we jump in and order mango and yoghurt, lemon and biscuit, and stracciatella and cherry.
They taste as wonderful as they look. As we risk brain freeze, we check out the other items on the menu – savoury and sweet crepes, sandwiches, fruit juices, special coffees. All look fabulous.
It’s going to be a long, hot summer. I’m just glad we discovered how good Freddino’s ice cream is right at the start of it.
Note: The ice creams in the picture were €2.50 each, there are bigger versions at €3.50.
Category : beaches
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