Five questions with Gelato Junkie co-owner Leni Bebensee, of central Dunedin, who began serving gelato from her new business in the lower Octagon this month.
Q: When and why did you open your shop in the lower Octagon?
On Sunday, November 17 to be open for the summer. I’ve had the idea for the business in my head for about 18 months. I’m originally from Germany and when I visited my family there about a year ago, I travelled to Italy to do a three-week gelato-making course in Bologna.
Q: Why gelato?
I’m a trained chef and I’ve always loved gelato. Gelatories are everywhere in Germany.
Q: How many flavours do you sell?
At the moment, we have nine flavours using as many New Zealand ingredients as possible and use Southern ingredients such as strawberries from Waimate and milk from The Natural Dairy in Oamaru.
Q: How has business been since opening?
Very good. As soon as the shop opened I was serving gelato for three hours straight and I almost sold out. Business has been nice and steady, especially when it’s a sunny day.
Q: Any concerns about selling gelato during a Dunedin winter?
No. Gelato sells in all seasons in Europe and New Zealanders are the leading consumers of ice cream.