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Pastry & Ice Cream in Palermo
Sicily makes some of the world's best pastries and ice cream. This page lists the better ice cream and pastry bars in Palermo, Sicily's largest city, and the one with the most establishments of this kind.Visit Sicily's first monthly online magazine! (We hesitate to refer to these places as "cafés.") Here in Sicily, desserts are practically a way of life. The names of some of these foods are translated on the Food and Wine page. Visit the Restaurant page for lists and reviews of some of Palermo's restaurants. Our criteria for selecting these cafés, apart from quality, is that they have tables where you can enjoy your pastries, ice cream or coffee. That is not to say that all of them have waiters; in some of these cafés you purchase what you want and then take it to a table. In Sicily, cafés are typically open all day from around 8:30 in the morning until around 10:00 or 11:00 at night, with no afernoon closing. Most are open Sunday, too. Our critics' collective opinion is that the quality of all the places mentioned is about equal, though some offer a wider variety of pastries or ice creams than others. (The list is alphabetical.)

Accardi. On the corner of Via Piave at Via Alessi, off Via Basile, which borders the main university campus. The neighbourhood isn't much for scenery but Accardi's pastries are good.

Alba. Piazza Don Bosco. Located near Via Libertà and Viale Lazio, Bar Alba is often quite crowded, with standing room only.

Antico Caffé Spinnato. Via Principe di Belmonte 117. Serves pastries, drinks and ice creams at the tables on Via Belmonte, a street closed to traffic.

Caffé Opera. Piazza G. Verdi. Opposite the Teatro Massimo. Opera is convenient, and it has an indoor tea room as well as outdoor tables.

California. Via Re Federico 115. Located a few blocks from the Palazzo di Giustizia (Courthouse) near Via F. Aprile. Worth finding.

Cubana. Via Pitrè 141. It's in the Altarello district near Via Regione Siciliana, the highway that loops around Palermo, but La Cubana is actually worth a small excursion.

Cubola. Piazza Unità d'Italia. Set in a charming little park, it is more a bar and café than a pastry temple.

Gran Nobel. Piazza Unità d'Italia. Located at the edge of the square where you'll find the Cubola, Nobel is elegant but, like Cubola, more a bar/café than a pastry maker.

Magnolie. Piazza F. Restivo off Via Piemonte. Like Piazza Don Bosco, this square is located near Via Libertà and Viale Lazio, but on the other side of Via Libertà. They have table service but close early, usually around 10:00 PM.

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Mazzara. Via Generale Magliocco 15 at Via G. Vaglica. Literally steps from Caffé Opera, near Piazza Ungheria and the Teatro Massimo, making it especially convenient when Opera is crowded. Equally excellent selection of pastries.

Recupero. Via Malaspina 90. Though its neighbourhood is nothing special, Recupero is famous among Palermitans for its vast variety of ice creams.

Renato. Piazza Mondello. Located in the main piazza in Mondello, the seaside resort district of Palermo. Good selection of ice creams and granite (ices).

Santoro. Piazza Indipendenza. Near the Norman Palace in central Palermo, on the edge of a wooded square. A shady spot on a hot day of sightseeing.

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