Liberty’s – Natick MA

4 08 2011

With vacation time spent, it seems everyone is falling back into regular schedules already. While it may bring some ennui to most days, it also means that I can scoot out and have lunch with my brother near his work. Last time we did it, we found this place after we’d already had cones. This time it was a target and Tim got a black raspberry cone and I had Butter Crunch.

There’s no countertop to hop up next to a barstool and call out to a jerk to pull you a vanilla coke, but stepping inside the front door of Liberty’s, you can tell for sure that you are in a parlor. With more than thirty-five years in business, everything here is homemade, and the people working today look as though they may have been pulling scoops since day one.

There’s a smattering of tables and chairs in the front part of this shop, and it’s easy to imagine that these tables are cluttered with locals that come here every morning for breakfast. They’ve got a menu full of egg sandwiches and other morning treats, and they seem to keep a grill for lunch stuff, but at this time of day, no one seems to here for any reason other than ice cream.

Throwing the couple sherbets and the four frozen yogurt options into the mix, there are thirty options here, but nothing too wild and crazy. Most of the options are more about the flavor rather than what is held in suspension, and the experience in working here comes through in the strong taste. Tim’s black raspberry is smooth and sweet with no trace of seeds at all, I have a taste of the butter crunch and opt not to get another taste of anything different and just go for a cone (though this was partly because I couldn’t tell if the old guy scooping for me was being ornery or just joking with me).

In the midst of a strip mall, there’s no place to wander outside so we sit down at a table and take it all in. This may be the butteriest butter crunch that I’ve encountered in ages. The crunch seems like crystallized nuggets of sugar… not toffee, but something equally powerful… and they are mixed throughout the ice cream in various-sized pieces. Together, this ice cream is a rich and thick mix that stands very strong on the legs of flavors and textures and just doing things right.

My brother recommended going to Five Guys for lunch while we were out, so I was stunned to find that a vegetarian was taking me to a burger joint. Apparently it’s been around for twenty-five years in the DC area; Tim said it’s where Obama gets his burger fix. Not expecting that the basic is a double burger, I thought it was pretty darn good, but my bun was too thin and had trouble keeping the contents contained.

Cone – small $2.50 medium $3 large $3.50

Sundae – small $3.50 medium $4 large $4.50

Frappe $3.90

Liberty’s Ice Cream Parlor

2 Mill St # 3, Natick, MA 01760-4124

508 655-0225

Open year round

Daily 8a-7p (summers until 10p); closed Sundays

www.libertysicecream.com

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