It is no coincidence that the Firenze Gelato Festival came into being in the capital of Tuscany. Indeed it was here that in 1536 Bernardo Buontalenti was born. Eclectic artist, painter, sculptor, architect, stage designer and military engineer, when he was at the service of the Medici family he also dealt with organizing the court festivals. Appointed by Cosimo I to prepare the banquet to inaugurate the Fortezza del Belvedere, in 1559 Buontalenti bowled over guests with a cold cream made from a base of milk, honey, egg yolks plus a splash of wine, aromatized with bergamot, lemons and oranges. So the Florentine noblemen’s international guests tasted and savoured the tasty cold dessert and made haste to publicize and offer it on returning to their countries. In a few decades, Florence became famed as the birthplace of gelato, laying the foundations for a tradition that still boasts success in the culinary field today.