Signs of Spring

17 02 2009

I‘d last been to Rota Spring Farm in Sterling on Election Day, a few days after they closed. When I drove in then, there were a few guys mulling about,  looking at the land. Finding myself in Clinton with time to spare, I figured that I’d drive into Sterling and see what was up (and if they’d posted an opening date. What I found was this:

Rota Spring Farm Addition 2009 Sterling Mass

Rota Spring Farm is expanding. Not sure what is going to be in that space, so I’m not even going to speculate. Instead, I smile at the sign that says “See You In March” and dream about the possibilities. And love the fact that even if that groundhog saw his shadow, we’ve only got four more weeks of winter now, and the worst has already melted.

Sorry for the bad picture quality, I wasn’t intending to do any ice cream work when I was out so this is using PhotoBooth and holding my computer over my shoulder.

Spasso – Needham MA

7 02 2009

Tom and Jess had been after me to take them to Baza since I first mentioned the new Russian market in Newton to them. They called and I had the paper open to a story on a new gelateria just a couple miles further down the road in Needham. I had a Heath cup, Tom had an Espresso Chip, and Jess had Khulfi.

Spasso Caffe and Gelateria Needham Mass Gelato Ice Cream Sorbet Sorbetto

It’s an article tucked in the g section of the Boston Globe that alerts me to the existence of Spasso. Owner Curtis Grace opened this shoppe in October, proving that even in the cold, New Englanders love their ice cream. While this place has only been open for four months, he’s been making gelatos and sorbets under the Doriti name since his parents returned from a trip to Italy with the recipes and knowhow twenty-three years ago.

With a storefront facing the green in the center of Needham, Spasso is in a great location for walking traffic in the midst of a bunch of small stores (though it is just around the corner from Abbott’s). The shop is small with room for a few small tables along the side of the store and a couple bigger tables in front. What dominates the shop is the large glass counter that displays all of the store’s treats.

Inside the case was nearly two dozen tubs of gelati and sorbetti in an array of flavors. The fruit flavors were mostly the sorbets and I sampled the blood orange. After mulling about and discussing our options, I finally opted for a cup of the Heath flavor gelato. Cup, because for some reason gelaterias have an innate hatred of cones apparently.

The heath was different that I had presumed, because the gelato was toffee flavored with little pieces of chocolate rather than pieces of heath bar. The thin crumbling of the chocolate was much like the way the pieces fall off the toffee in candy bar form, and the gelato was a rich almondy caramel. The only problem was I didn’t have any toffee stuck between my teeth later on.

Heath Gelato Spasso Caffe and Gelateria Needham Mass

We eventually did make it to Baza where I picked salami at random (they were out of the bear salami I had last time) and tried another variation of smoked fish (cold smoked sea bass this time). However we were derailed when a sign for the gluten-free menu at the nearby Stone Hearth Pizza lured celiac Jess for dinner and she had the keys. All in all it made for a good day and the promise of ice cream stands reopening not too far off.

Cup  – small $2.85 medium $3.59 large $4.25

Milkshake $4.50

Spasso Caffe And Gelateria

1498 Highland Ave, Needham MA

781 559-0512

Open year round

Monday-Saturday 7a-9p