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Churros + Gelato = Nuki |

Food and Leisure

Churros + Gelato = Nuki

Kathy Moran - The Philippine Star
Churros  + Gelato = Nuki
United team of Nuki: Martha Yupangco, Elena Balaguer, Rica Lorenzo, Cecilia Davila and Alessandro Abbate at the Nuki kiosk in SM MOA

Talk about a marriage made in heaven: one partner is Spanish, one is Italian, and each is better when paired together.

Meet Nuki Churros & Gelato, the first store in the country to bring together these much-loved delights from Spain and Italy.

“We want to cater to the people who want to have good dessert,” said Elena Balaguer, one of the owners of Nuki. “I am Spanish and my other partners are Italian and Filipino, so we wanted to bring the most authentic and best desserts of the two countries — gelato and churros — to Manila, but we wanted them to be blended in a way Filipinos have never experienced.”

So, Elena and her partners came up with a dessert concept that did exactly that — and more.

Just married: Churros and gelato — better together.

On their own, churros and gelato may already be satisfying; however, a Nuki serving of authentic gelato matched with handmade churros promises a discovery not to be missed.

“We do a very good churros,” declares Elena. “They are supposed to be thin, because if they are too thick, these aren’t authentic churros anymore. Churros must be cooked fast and is a bread that combines flour, water and salt — we add sugar when cooked, so it becomes a dessert.”

Developed by a multi-cultural team that drew inspiration from Spanish and Italian roots, Nuki was born out of a memory of a well-loved churreria in Madrid.

“We serve it the traditional way with three dips,” shared Elena. “We have a dark chocolate one with chocolate sourced from the South. There are also a salted caramel and milky chocolate dips.”

Like in Spain: Churros with dark chocolate dip

The store in Manila offers a venue for wonderful treats imbued with those simple but classic childhood joys.

The churros are prepared with premium ingredients and sliced thinner so that they can be deep-fried fast, making them crunchy on the outside yet soft on the inside. Nuki uses high oleic oil, selected for its high heat tolerance and healthier fat composition.

Customers can choose among servings of three, six, 12, and 18 pieces of churros (or the heftier variant, porras), with sumptuous dips in dark chocolate, salted caramel, and milky chocolate flavors. Essential to the richness of these dips is cocoa powder made with quality Trinitario beans that are fermented and toasted especially for Nuki. It has nearly 20 percent cocoa butter content, or almost double that of commercial varieties, making Nuki’s dips a naturally thicker and more flavorful feast for the senses.

Gelato in four fl avors: Chocolate, pistachio, ube and strawberry

Enter Gelato

Elena explained that the difference between ice cream and gelato is that ice cream is made mostly from butterfat. “Gelato has a base of milk, so it is dense and air content is minimal.”

The other half of the Nuki experience is the array of certified Italian gelato that provides the perfect tandem with the churros. Its base ingredient is sourced from Florence, where gelato is proudly embraced as a national treasure. With a lower content of fat, sugar, and air, gelato is healthier than ice cream, yet richer in milk and flavor. Nuki’s gelato flavors include milk chocolate, cookies and cream, pistachio, strawberry, and ube. It also has a couple of vegan options, namely coconut and lemon.

Gelato is for all ages, but Nuki has something even more special for the younger ones — soft-serve flavors and twirly combinations of cream, strawberry, and yogurt. All gelato flavors are likewise available as milkshakes, while the coconut and lemon flavors may be ordered as sherbets. 

Nuki makes for a fresh and fun, healthy and happy, anytime dessert or snack. “The flavor and way we make our churros and gelato are really authentic and I don’t think you can find it anywhere here in Metro Manila,” Elena declared. “Here at Nuki we have the density of good gelato and the authentic flavor of churros, which we serve as the ‘apas’ for the gelato in one cup. Perfect. There could be no better and yummy experience than that.”

Take a trip to SM MOA and try for yourself what gelato and churros taste like together in one cup. Or if you like them eaten separately, try a scoop or two of the yummy gelato. And then ask for churros with my favorite dark-chocolate dip and you will be transported to Italy in a cup of gelato or Spain in a serving of churros con chocolate.

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Nuki Churros & Gelato’s first store is open in SM Mall of Asia, at the South Entertainment Mall.

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