Our gelato story began with the hope that sweets can make you smile!
I know it is a cliché everywhere but this simple hope led me to start making gelato.
For over 20 years, I have been trying to do my best for supporting the people who need natural food and medicine/care sometimes in the sensitive timing and serious situation.
Thanks to our customers and partners, sometimes it worked well and their smile always made me smile of course.
However, it is also true that I always felt pressured and somehow I started feeling I also needed a smile without reason, just like an angel.
That is how gelato made me so passionate.
Our gelato experienced and enjoyed a small journey before opening our shop and reached to 300 children and adults at the graduate ceremony at Katsuyama Children’s Village with my best efforts for angel smiles! I really wanted to try this journey because that school is one of the first alternative co-educational boarding school in Japan where my 3 kids out of 5 kids spent their 9 years, inspired by the works of John Dewey and A.S.Neill (Summerhill School, England. 1920-present) and also authorized by the Japanese government. It emphasizes children’s learning through experiences and their intellectual, emotional and social development through living together with others.
I learnt so much as parents from the school and now the school principal and our gelato have so much in common.
Their three principles are
■ Decide for and by yourself
Children and adults sharing the same community discuss every topic at the meeting such as classroom meeting, dormitory meeting and school meeting. That is how everyone is assured to have the right to decide for and by yourself with others.
Everyone has its own original his/her interest and people respect the difference each other. Not necessary to learn the same topic at the same timing. You can choose what, when, how and where you would like to learn.
■ Experience-based learning
Experiencing is the centre and core of learning, not only from books and study kits Children form and join a project based on their preference and experience what they want.
Besides these principles, the following statement, that grabbed my heart is;
“Put children’s happiness first and everything follows by”
“Best teacher laughs with children but worst teacher laughs at children”
- S.Neill –
These principles and messages are really important to live as leading their own life and society, which are unfortunately the opposite to the one that Japanese normal education system tries to achieve, that is “be obedient, not to be unique” “education for controlling easily by teachers”
Coming back to our gelato journey, considering these background of the school and my respect and gratitude to the school, I made milk-based and milk-free Baked Sweet Potato Gelato for the graduation ceremony. The ingredient baked sweet potato puree came from Mashiki town, where the earthquake hit last year in Kumamoto.
Hopefully, we can work with the people in the area affected by natural disasters.
Sweets are not just sugar thing as some people hesitate to take because they are bad for health, but sometimes it surely brings you happiness through your smile when you forget smiling in fear and anger.
I believe that gelato is the start of sweetheart bringing an angel smile to your life.
Our gelato journey will never end, will challenge the common sense and will enjoy its freedom without unnecessary controllership, and the smile is always the reason for our gelato.
A smile happens freely by and for yourself anywhere with every reason.
Your smile is everything in our gelato.
C.E.O. of Prema Inc. Kyoto JAPAN
Gelatiere of Premarche Gelateria