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.
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.
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
Spasso Caffe And Gelateria
1498 Highland Ave, Needham MA
Open year round