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Dairy Fresh

Checked out the Dairy Fresh building this morning on my way to the office. The "Closed for Renovations" sign has been removed and there is nothing going on that is visible to the eye.


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  1. Damn, that place was a must-stop for me every time I ventured into the NE.

    1. Drat! The owner's wife also closed her flower shop around the corner. Also one of my regular stops on my North End shopping cruises.

      Their website is still up so I emailed to find out if the web store is still operating.

      2 Replies
      1. re: BostonZest

        The email bounce back as a locked mailbox. I guess we'll have to hold a service for this long-time favorite next door at Neptune.

        1. re: BostonZest

          that flippin' stinks.

          With my sweet tooth, I thought I'd bought enough candy myself to help that place thrive!

      2. I stopped into Going Bananas yesterday. The girl who used to work at Dairy Fresh is now working here. She told me that they negated on reopening/renovating. Yet another great place bites the dust.

        1. The local papers in the North End are blaming it on the delayed renovations of Salem Street as a whole... but that doesn't explain it. Otherwise, places like Neptune and Beanstock Coffee wouldn't be thriving. Sadly, I think it has more to do with the fact that Dairy Fresh looked less then tidy and I often heard customers complaining that they'd found insects in their bags of candy. (No exaggeration.) Spiffing up the operation would have helped a lot.

          4 Replies
          1. re: emily88

            I have to admit: when I heard that Dairy Fresh closed down, I was incredibly bummed. And then I thought, "Well, I never actually bought much there. And I know of a place that has better fudge. And the store always was kinda dingy and a lot of the gourmet items were near or at expiration. Hm, I may be less broken up about this than I thought..."

            In some ways, I think I liked the idea of Dairy Fresh more than the reality.

            1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps

              I loved their "reception sticks". Served them at every dinner party. I was told by them over and over that " we'll be getting them soon." Eventually, I found them on line. I guess they knew they were getting out, How very, very sad.

              1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps

                Please reveal the place with better fudge! (I mean, I know of equally good fudge, but it's all out of the city, which may be for the best.)

                And I know of nowhere else with (1) those sweet counter guys who always remembered me and my chronic need for two square inches of penuche, even when I left the neighborhood amd (2) those tart dried plums--not prunes but dried red plums, they were delicious.

                1. re: BostonCookieMonster

                  The name, I cringe to report, is Ooh La La Fudge, at 381 Trapelo Road in Belmont. Terrible name, excellent fudge. I'm particularly fond of their peanut butter/chocolate, which can be hard to get a good version of.

            2. I was at Ernesto's Pizza on Sunday, down the street from DF, and the owner told me, more or less, the same story as birdy30. They had the best candied fruit slices - like the ones I always had at Passover. Any suggestions for another place to get them? (Not TJ's - theirs don't come close!).

              1. I talked to a friend of mine who is from the North End originally. He called some people he knows - the father, the man who started the Dairy Fresh passed away a couple of months ago. (We always referred to him as "Joe Candy.")

                I haven't actually purchased much there lately (am glad I went in a short time ago - must have been right before they closed) and bought some chocolate. I did notice that their stock was very thin.

                Have to add, also - IMHNSO - there was nothing 'dingy' about this candy store. It wasn't a chain, wasn't refined, polished - it was a mom & pop store, something that is becoming a thing of the past in the North End these days, sad to say. They had the best variety of chocolates (hand dipped & others), nuts, candies, flavorings for cookies.. Easter was a feast of the eyes, nose (and palate) and it was a pleasure just to squeeze through all the people to get into that place.

                Another place gone is the veggie stand further up Salem St. (used to step down a few steps to get into it - right before Polcari's.) I heard he retired, sold the place & went back to Italy. I used to love going in there just for the interesting conversations!

                Guess I'm just being a bit nostalgic today. I realize that things change, and often we get so many terrific new favorites... but I'm glad I had those memories going way back from when I was a kid.. and now I say a hearty Ciao! to my friends of yesteryear.

                5 Replies
                1. re: threedogs

                  Speaking of that veggie place, anyone heard an ETA on the fish market that's supposedly going in there?

                  1. re: threedogs

                    no way! Calore? I loved that place, loved the owner and his generous, slightly devil-may-care attitude. He was always courtly without being lecherous, always tossed in an extra plum or apple or gave my daughter a banana for the walk home. I don't live nearby anymore so it's been a while since I've been.

                    And Dairy Fresh--I know--not a perfect place but still kind of magic, all chock-a-block with candy...I used to hit it at Christmas for fruitcake supplies (yes--those dried plums!) and stocking stuffers. Salem Street will not be the same. Ernesto's--don't leave, please!!

                    1. re: greengage

                      The last time I visited Dairy Fresh was (as it turned out - unbeknown to me) a bit before they closed. Their stock was skimpy - but I thought it was my poor memory of what-used-to-be.

                      sigh.. I miss them already...

                      1. re: threedogs

                        Dairy Fresh is now going to be MOD - an athletic and yoga apparel store.

                  2. Oh man I wish I hadn't missed this thread! I loved Dairy Fresh - they always remembered me and I too have a serious addiction to good penuche fudge.

                    If any chowhounds have a place in Boston with good penuche (none of that corn syrup robbing all the moisture from your body fudge) let me know!