Gelato is often characterized as "Italian ice cream," but it's actually a more versatile term. Italian gelato includes all frozen desserts within the realm of ice cream. In the US, ice cream must legally contains a minimum of 10% butterfat, while gelato is usually made with between 0% and 8% butterfat.
Compared to ice cream, less air is churned into gelato, producing a creamier and denser consistency. Gelato is a softer and more delicate product, in part because it is served at a relatively warmer temperature. These qualities allow your taste buds to experience flavors more intensely and account for why naturally rich ingredients often make the most exciting gelato flavors. In fact, gelato is often perceived as more flavorful and indulgent, despite its lower fat content.
Sorbetto is gelato made with water. While other gelati most frequently use milk and cream as the main liquid components, sorbetti simply use water. That does not, however, mean that sorbetto is hard and icy. When done right, sorbetti should have the same creamy, dense, and rich consistencies as other gelati. Sorbetti often lend themselves to fruit flavors, to highlight the quality of fresh fruits.