Given the epic heat wave scorching much of the U.S. this week, we at Tour Italy now thought it would be fun to bring you this Italy Fun Fact: Did you know that in Italians invented the ice cream cone? As with much culinary history, there is some debate as to the precise origins of the iconic and delicious ice cream cone, but the consensus among culinary historians is that Italian immigrants living in England in the 19th century were the first to make a rolled waffle exclusively for ice cream. Thus was born the ice cream cone!
You scream, I scream, we all scream for ice cream! In a cone!
In their early years, in the mid-1800s, ice cream cones were referred to ice cream wafers, ice cream shells, ice cream cups, according to the website What’s Cooking In America. From the same source, we learn that the first patents (yes, patents!) for ice cream cones were not far behind, the first for ice cream cones went to two Italian immigrants, one living in Manchester, England, the other living in New York, New York:
1902 – Antonio Valvona of Manchester, England received Patent No. 701,776 on June 3, 1902 for an “Apparatus for Baking Biscuit Cups for Ice Cream.”
1903 – On September 20, 1903, Italo Marchiony (1868-1954), an Italian immigrant living in New York, NY, filed a patent application for a “molding apparatus for forming ice-cream cups and the like.” U.S. Patent No. 746,971 was issued to him on December 15, 1903. His patent drawings show a mold for shaping small cups, complete with tiny handles – not a cone.
Isn’t this a hoot! Of course in Italy you can get gelato, that Italian marvel we highlighted in this blog post, in a cup or a cone. Do it, on your next Italy vacation or Italy escorted tour!
Here’s to Italian ice cream and gelato cones,