Italian Ice Cream

When I was a kid, I couldn’t remember a day without an ice cream. Every single day, my Dad used to buy ice cream for me and my brothers and we could choose whatever we wanted… a single coup, double, tripple, anything. Yes, he was a big ice cream lover and he trained us to be one.

There was an ice cream parlor in the center of Jakarta where he used to take us. It’s called “Ragusa – Italian Ice Cream“, located at Jalan Veteran. I still remember, every time Dad said, “Let’s go to Ragusa“, me and my brothers were jumping around happily! Why? Because the ice cream was sooooo good!!!

We usually went there on Sundays. Sitting at the back seat of Dad’s red cabriolet citroen car on a sunny Sunday, I couldn’t wait to taste the soft and delicate Italian ice cream. Sunday was definitely the best day of the week for me :).

Vanilla flavour was my favorite. It melted right away in my tongue. Mmmm.. yum! I wonder why it tasted so good and delicate? Other ice cream could never beat its taste, I thought. And I still remember Dad could eat a lot of them. Different flavors in a big portion, too! While I was happy enough with my kid size ice cream… I had a small tummy anyway 😉 hehehe…

Ragusa was my favorite place back then and it definitely has a sweet memory of my childhood time. It still exists until now, at the exact location, next to a fancy restaurant named Dapur Babah. One day, after dinner with a friend at Dapur Babah, we walked down the street and passed it. “Hey, let’s buy some ice cream at Ragusa!“, I said. I felt for having a nostalgic moment that night and suddenly got all excited coz I hadn’t eaten Ragusa Ice Cream for years!!!

Entering Ragusa, the oldest ice cream parlor in Jakarta that was founded in 1932, I was a bit disappointed. The place was so much different with what I had imagined. It used to be the fanciest ice cream parlor in town. But now… the place looked like an abandoned old restaurant back from the Dutch colonial era, with some black and white photos on the wall, showing the progression of the family business.

I ate the vanilla and chocolate ice cream as soon as the waiter served it. But…. hey, wait a minute… “It doesn’t taste the same!! This ice cream doesn’t taste as good as it used to!!!” I was so disappointed. I was wondering why… ??
Still confused, I asked my friend whether she felt the same way. She nodded.

Why my favorite ice cream doesn’t taste as good as it used to?

Then I realized, as I grow older, I’ve tasted ice cream from all those popular brands, such Ben & Jerry’s, Haagen Dazs, Baskin-Robbins, Gelatissimo, etc… I even had a chance to taste real gelato ice cream in Italy when I was on holidays (yes, it was the best ice cream I’ve ever had!!! and for that reason, I kept on going to a gelato shop 3 times per day.. for two weeks!!) :D. So, with all these ‘tour de ice cream’, no wonder that my childhood’s fave one is no longer yummy. Even though, the original recipe of the famous Ragusa Italian Ice Cream remains the same. It is me who has changed.

And it scares me. I hope I won’t change that much so that I could still appreciate things that I used to adore or like and also appreciate the simplest thing in life… just like I want to appreciate a simple taste of a homemade-old fashioned-original ice cream , even though I know it doesn’t taste as extravaganza as the other ice cream out there…

ps: photo of Ragusa by umarkhatab


  • darliiing… keren nih theme barunya! it’s so you! 🙂
    iyaa… emang it’s all relative yah. makanya yuk hijrah ke angola with its simple standard of life biar bisa merasakan lagi simple pleasures in life.. it’s fun! 😀 *well, sometimes a bit tough, but it’s part of the deal, lhoh kok curhat!* hehehehe..

  • darlllll…. ma’aciiih… lutu yaaa theme barunya 😀 ^-^ so girlie dan semua warna2x kesukaan gw! hihihi…

    hijrah ke Angola? termasuk tetanggaan ama sebelah rumah lo yg sering pasang musik jedar-jeder sampe tengah malem itu??? oh noooo!! 😀 hahaha…

  • Hi Nila, thanks for visiting Indonesian Expatriates Forum the other day.

    I’m not originally from Jakarta, but went to Ragusa almost 10 years a go and well, to me the ice cream tastes ok but since it doesn’t bring any childhood memory, I don’t feel the rush to go back there again. However I appreciate the owner’ attempt to keep everything just the same as years a go 🙂

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