A few months back Coralie and I were sitting at a bar of Piatti in La Jolla, enjoying a glass of wine and chatting with the bartender. It was a great place to relax, catch up, and watch the hustle and bustle of the dinner rush as we waited for our table. A waiter came up with an empty tray and the bartender began filling it — but suddenly I realized they weren’t serving wine, they were serving heaven. 😀

Curious, we asked the bartender what that amazing concoction was… “Why, an affogato. You ladies never had one? It’s to die for.” And so I was inducted into the wonderful world of affogato.

Even though we were waiting for our dinner table to be ready and just hanging out with an appetizer, I had. to. have. one. 🙂 Dessert, schmizzert! Hehe. Affogato is Italian for “drowned,” which is a good descriptor. Ice cream/gelato, drowned in hot espresso and Amaretto.

A little later that month I made myself a finals indulgence version, just with things I had around the house (with some extra chocolate added in, and no alcohol). Of course it was tasty.

This is a crowd pleaser recipe for dinner parties, and easy enough to make in small quantities for individual indulgences 🙂 As with all recipes with few components, the quality of ingredients really is a key part in how good the recipe turns out — so don’t skimp!

Easy Affogato

Serves yourself


  • A few scoops good quality vanilla ice cream
  • Optional: A few good chocolate chips (I used Guittard)
  • Optional: A dusting of cocoa powder for garnish, if desired (I used Ghirardelli Sweet Ground Chocolate and Cocoa)
  • 1 cup very strong brewed coffee – or espresso if you have the materials and tools to make it!
  • Optional: One shot Amaretto or other sweet liquor


  • Put ice cream and optional ingredients in a wine glass or tall beer glass.
  • Pour the hot coffee over the ice cream — slowly to avoid cracking the glass with the change in temperature!

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