In case you haven’t noticed, it’s still summer out there, and with temperatures in the Western part of the U.S. slated to continue rising through these sizzling months, there’s no better time to talk about cool treats to beat the heat. If you’ve ever wondered just what the differences between ice cream and gelato were, the answer goes beyond mere semantics and higher price points; indeed, gelato is quite distinct from ice cream, boasting a creamier, smoother, silkier and denser texture than the American dessert favorite, while remaining more elastic and fluid. Meanwhile, Italian gelato includes only about four- to nine-percent fat and less air than American ice cream, helping to keep it dense, fluid and creamy. With all these benefits down pat, let’s dig into some of the best gelato in Woodland Hills!

Villa Dolce Gelato produces artisanal gelato and sorbet, with an origin story that begins with a dream to bring Italy’s finest dessert to the United States. Inspiration for the business came from the Marcaccini brothers Monte, Giancarlo and Giannandrea, who were raised in Rome but came to California to attend high school and play basketball, eventually earning scholarships to Division I universities. With awe-inspiring words and values that launched the Villa Dolce Gelato company, the brothers became one of the largest manufacturing entities in the Artisan-style gelato market in the U.S., with chefs like Wolfgang Puck demanding that Villa Dolce be served in his restaurants. Today, Villa Dolce Gelato can also be found in Hilton resort hotels, the Patina restaurants and in many premium supermarket chains. In Southern California, Villa Dolce is located at 6900 Canby Avenue Suite 106 in Reseda.

Tifa Chocolate and Gelato  offers a unique experience in the dessert café arena, greeting patrons from the moment they enter with a feeling that’s extremely welcoming. A blend of hand-crafted classic and traditional gelato flavors with the freshest ingredients achieve an authentic taste with an American twist, while an assortment of artisan chocolate bars from around the world and unique homemade truffles, bon-bons, caramels and nut clusters beckon those with a sweet tooth like a moth to a flame. Tifa also offers fresh pastries, espresso, pour-over coffee and cold brew. The shop is located at 28888 Roadside Drive in Agoura Hills.

Grom Malibu  was established in 2003 and has made authentic Italian gelato its primary specialty from the very beginning. The shop chooses only the best raw materials from around the world, fusing them with staples such as high-quality fresh milk and cage-free eggs in addition to seasonal ingredients such as strawberries in the summer and mandarins in winter. What’s more, Grom’s gelato is 100-percent natural with no artificial flavors, colors, preservatives or emulsifiers. For some of the best gelato in Woodland Hills, look no further than Grom Malibu, located at 3886 Cross Creek Road in Malibu.

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams is the brainchild of Jeni Britton Bauer, who has been making ice creams professionally for two decades using an ahead-of-the-trend vision coupled with inspired flavors that sparked the artisan ice cream movement more than a decade before it would become a top food trend. The team at Jeni’s is absolutely devoted to making better ice creams and gelatos, and bringing people together – all while serving amazing desserts in a sparkling and beautiful space with attentive and in-the-moment hospitality; indeed, Jeni herself believes that service is an art that brings people together and helps them connect. Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams is located at 4751 Commons Way Suite A in Calabasas.

With the heat well on its way to sticking around the Los Angeles area, it’s a good time to start thinking about remaining summer resolutions – and we’re referring to where to scoop the best gelato. Thankfully, L.A. is spoiled for choice when it comes to desserts, with scoop shops, gelaterias and outlets parked everywhere from the Valley to the South Bay.